Background. It is crucial for psychology students and graduates to study ethics. However, neither teaching nor learning ethics is always an easy process. Course syllabi often include philosophical texts, specialized concepts, and numerous ethics or procedural codes. Could we consider all of this as a cognitive process? The students should be aware of all the vulnerabilities that can impact ethical decision-making, such as cognitive errors, emotional factors, social and organizational pressures, and situational factors.
There is a great deal of new research on the advantages of including emotional dimensions in the decision-making process (Decety & Cacioppo, 2012; Decety & Cowell, 2015); this research evenclaims that emotions strengthen the contribution of the cognitive process, and as a result enrich the final ethical judgments. Additionally, there is also a kind of hidden curriculum that we provide to students (Goold & Stern, 2006; Hafferty & Franks, 1994). It is exactly this area (internships, the way we relate to the students) to which we need to pay attention during their undergraduate and graduate years.
Conclusion. Expecting students to learn and internalize knowledge in a meaningful way necessitates new modes of instruction. Specifically, teaching and learning ethics in an interactive way, while paying attention to both good decision-making skills and emotional cues, would provide exactly what students would enjoy and learn from the most. In this article, we will suggest that, if the question is how to sensitize students to ethical issues in psychology, and in the profession, it is important to give them an active role and responsibility for disseminating ethical principles. We will also introduce different techniques that help combine knowledge with emotionality while teaching ethics in psychology.
Keywords: psychology ethics; ethics in psychological practice; teaching ethics; teaching techniques; new methods; ethics course.