phil200 ethics short essay assignment

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Assignment Instructions


For this assignment, you will compose a well-written and thoughtful short-essay of 500-750 words in length (2-3 pages). Select and answer one of the four questions provided.

Format & Expectations

State your thesis, the answer you want to defend using at least three well-supported reasons embodying logic, reason, and research. Give possible objections to your arguments, answer these objections and restate your conclusion. Essays should include a Works Cited page following MLA Style. For grading expectations, please see the iRubric for this assignment in the Gradebook.


Submit your essay as an attachment within the Assignments area.

It is not what you think that matters, but what you can support. Be sure you are expressing an INFORMED opinion. All papers must have credible research on the topic included.


  1. Give an argument for legalizing active euthanasia and an argument against it. [For this paper, you can see “active euthanasia” as either physician assisted suicide or what is more commonly called mercy killing.]
  2. Argue for or against the principle that a just society must provide equality of opportunity for those with the interest and talent. [You must name and discuss at least one philosopher who holds this view.]
  3. Clarify as much as possible Aristotle’s distinction between practical knowledge and theoretical knowledge. Argue for or against his view that the good or happiness comes from leading a contemplative life. [Be sure you understand the distinction]
  4. How is the “greatest happiness principle” supposed to be useful in determining what I ought to do? [Be sure you discuss Mill and his understanding of the principle]

Supporting Materials

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