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Dates and Fees

SHO fee for the selected program you wish to partake in is a nearly all-inclusive fee, and really does cover all of the essentials of the student´s study abroad experience.

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Study Semesters

SHO provides multiple options for students to participate in four different periods of time according to their needs or time limitations.

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Transfer Credit

Charles University in Prague uses the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS). All course subjects must be approved by your home institution for departmental credit.

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Sports Ethics

Course name: Sports Ethics
Course number: PKIN707
Language of instruction: English
Credits: 3 ECTS
Contact Hours: 22
Term: Fall 2015
Course meeting times: Will be updated
Course meeting place: Will be updated

Professor: Assoc. Prof. Irena P. Martínková, Ph.D., Prof. Jim Parry, Ed.D.

Contact Information: ;
Office address: H225
Office hours: Will be updated

Course Description

This course examines a number of ethical issues in sport, such as cheating, doping, violence, fair play and equality, equity and inclusion, the use of technologies, disability issues, etc. It will do this by introducing students to the practical skills of philosophical reasoning and critical ethical decision-making; and to the three main traditions in ethical theory – virtue ethics, deontology and utilitarianism. Thus, students will become aware of various ethical problems and dilemmas in sport, and will also learn the practical skills of critical evaluation of their engagement with sport, and of developing good reasons to back up their arguments. This applies both to their actual participation in and consumption of sport, and to their present and future roles in the management and administration of sport. Finally, students will be challenged to redesign sports in order to promote ethical outcomes. Teaching will be done through various interactive approaches (group work, role-play, case studies, etc.).

Learning Objectives
– Learn to identify and discuss ethical issues in sport
– Understand what counts as a good reason for dealing with a specific ethical problem in sport
– Understand how to develop reasoned approaches to the resolution of ethical problems in sport
– Discuss values of sport in an informed manner

Course Prerequisites

Methods of Instruction
Partly lectures (with and without PowerPoint presentations), but the main focus is on group work (small group discussions), consideration of case studies, role-play, etc.

Assessment and Final Grade

1. Assessment Type 1: Essay on one of the recommended topics 40%

2. Assessment Type 1: Individual presentation about a topic in sports ethics 25%

3. Assessment Type 2: Homeworks 20%

4. Assessment Type 3: Participation in sessions 20%

Marking scheme assessment PG 1-4 (1 = excellent; 4 = fail)

Course Requirements


The assessment essay (2000 words) should be on one of the recommended topics.
Criteria of evaluation: level of argumentation, scope and depth of coverage of a topic, originality.

Individual presentations

The presentation must be designed so as to be interactive, making the group think about and work upon the highlighted ethical problem or dilemma.
Criteria of evaluation: scope and depth of coverage of a topic, appropriateness of the form of the lesson, engagement of other students.


Reading recommended texts before the sessions, so that students are prepared for discussions of the suggested themes.

Participation in sessions

Engagement in groupwork, willingness to interact effectively, meaningful contribution to the sessions.

Attendance is mandatory.

Weekly Schedule

Week 1

Session 1: Three basic systems of ethics
Introduction to ethical theory: virtue ethics, deontology and utilitarian ethics; Argumentation in ethics, looking for a ‘good reason’

Session 2: Fair play
Various interpretations of fair play in sport will be discussed.
Selected concepts of fair play in the article by Sheridan (2003).

Week 2

Session 3: Moral values in sport
Introduction to thinking about values in sport, looking for sources of values in sport, discussing values important for sport.
Chapters 6 and 10 in Martínková (2013).

Session 4: Redesigning sports to promote morality
Looking for ways of redesigning sports rules to promote moral conduct in sport.
Chapter 17 in Martínková (2013).

Week 3

Session 5: Moral problems in training of children
Moral problems concerning children’s participation in competitive sports.
Article by Russell (2011).

Session 6: Youth Olympic Games – moral problems
Consideration of problems in the Youth Olympic Games.
Article by Parry (2012).

Session 7: Visit of a sporting event and identification of moral problems*

Week 4

Session 8: Moral problems in Paralympic sport
Identifying moral problems in Paralympic sport.

Article by Bredahl (2011)

Session 9: Paralympians Outperforming Olympians
Identifying moral problems in Paralympic sport.
Article by Wolbring (2012)

Week 5

Session 10: Moral problems in outdoor activities
Consideration of moral problems in outdoor activities; discussion of a case-study.
Selected moral dilemmas from Smith and Allison (2007).

Session 11: Training of dangerous sports
Discussing moral problems in dangerous sport – a case study.
Chapter by Ryall and Olivier (2011).

Week 5 Exams

Required reading

Bredahl, A-M. (2011). Coaching ethics and Paralympic sports. In A.R. Hardman and C. Jones (Eds.), The Ethics of Sports Coaching. London: Routledge, pp. 134-146.

Martínková, I. (2013). Instrumentality and Values in Sport. Prague: Karolinum Press.

Parry, J. (2012). The Youth Olympic Games – some ethical issues. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, 6(2), 138-154.

Russell, S. (2011). The moral ambiguity of coaching youth sport. In A.R. Hardman and C. Jones (Eds.), The Ethics of Sports Coaching. London: Routledge, pp. 87-103.

Ryal, E. and Olivier, S. (2011). Ethical issues in caching dangerous sports. In A.R. Hardman and C. Jones (Eds.), The Ethics of Sports Coaching. London: Routledge, pp. 185-198.

Sheridan, H. (2003). Conceptualizing ‘fair play’: a review of the literature. European Physical Education Review, 9(2), 163-184.

Smith, T. and Allison, P. (2007). Outdoor experiential leadership: Scenarios describing incidents, dilemmas and opportunities Tulsa, Oklahoma: Learning Unlimited.

Wolbring, G. (2012). Paralympians Outperforming Olympians: An Increasing Challenge for Olympism and the Paralympic and Olympic Movement. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, 6(2), 251-266.

Further reading

Hardman, A.R. and Jones, C. (Eds.), (2011). The Ethics of Sports Coaching. London: Routledge.

Hyland, D. (1988). Competition and Friendship. In W.J. Morgan and K.V. Meier (Eds.), Philosophic Inquiry in Sport. Champaign, Ill.: Human Kinetics, pp. 231-239.

Loland, S. (2002). Fair play in sport: a moral norm system. London: Routledge.

McNamee, M.J. (2008). Sports, virtues and vices. London: Routledge.

McNamee, M.J. and Parry, J. (Eds.). (1998). Ethics & Sport. London: Routledge.

Morgan, W.J., Meier, K., Schneider, A. (Eds.). (2001). Ethics in Sport. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

* The exact time of this session is subject to change, depending on the upcoming event.

About program

SHO works, partly, under the assumption that in many contexts the theoretical and participatory aspects of physical education and culture are often experienced as separate phenomena. SHO’s aspiration is to […]

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Admission Requirements for SHO Full Semester and Short-term program SHO accepts undergraduate students from all over the world, including universities that do not have a direct exchange agreement with Charles […]

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Contact: Luděk Brouček SHO Program Director Luděk Brouček is responsible for the overall management and operation of the SHO program, working in consultation with the SHO Faculty Academic Board. […]

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The length of courses is typically 22 contact hours (6 weeks). Compulsory Credits Course Code Introduction to Sport Humanities 3 ECTS PKIN700 Czech Physical Culture 3 ECTS PKIN701 Research Methods […]

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Student life

SHO’s extracurricular programs are, but not limited to, the following opportunities: Guest lectures that correspond directly with the students’ studies SHO Buddy Program Sport and Cultural Events (there are several, […]

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