Ethics and Legal Issues in Writing and Publishing

Writers, editors, and publishers face a minefield of ethical and legal issues. Ethical topics in this course include bias, conflict of interest, and deception. Legal topics include libel, copyright, and the right to privacy. We’ll pay attention to how all of this plays out over the Internet.

You’ll be able to contribute to lively discussions on all of these issues and complete written assignments to test your knowledge.

This course is available at the following time(s) and location(s):

Campus Session(s) Instructor(s) Cost Seats available  
Online - TBA $410.00 30 -

Instructional hours: 12

For online offerings, registration may close up to two business days before the course begins. Your course begins on the first date listed and ends six days after the last date listed. The interim dates/times are not your actual online class times.

What will you learn?

By the end of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Recognize ethical dilemmas for writers and publishers and understand the ethical principles that can help us sort through them
  • Understand and use professional codes of conduct
  • Identify industry norms and practices
  • Understand the basics of copyright and libel law, as well as the legal terms that apply to writing and publishing
  • Identify and use resources that can help you solve ethical and legal problems
  • Construct and evaluate ethical arguments that pertain to the issues discussed in the course
  • Communicate clearly and effectively about these issues
  • Apply your basic knowledge of legal terms to the understanding of book and periodical contracts
  • Avoid basic copyright and libel pitfalls

How will you learn?

  • Lectures
  • Class discussions
  • In-class exercises
  • Independent take-home assignments
  • Reading

How will you be evaluated?

Your grade will be based on the following:

  • Participation
  • One take-home quiz
  • Two short papers, one of which will be peer-evaluated

Textbooks and learning materials

We will provide all course materials online.

Hardware and software requirements

We deliver this course using SFU's online course management system, Canvas. You will receive course details and Canvas access instructions on the first day of the course. You can check if your browser is compatible with Canvas here.

Related program(s)

Look at other courses in