Skip to main content

Ethics and Boundaries: Biological Foundations

Studying ethical behavior in the research setting leads to some surprising insights, notably, we humans are remarkably similar in the way we construct our moral codes and remarkably inconsistent in how we apply them.

Key Program Information
Series Ethics and Boundaries
Next Session March 10, 2023 10am to 12:00pm
Related Programs

How we solve our moral dilemmas

Research in economics, social science, and biology tells us that our ethical behavior is complex, and our deepest motivations are not easily understood. Human history, though, provides ample evidence that by learning more about what we believe and why can give us more control over our moral behavior, allowing us to become better, more ethical people.  

This presentation will be about the biological origins of “ethical” behavior. The purpose of the day is to help each participant understand the roots of why we believe some acts are moral and some are not and how our brains complicate efforts to solve moral dilemmas.   

Learning Objectives:   

  • Describe several ways that experimental scientists study morality  
  • Explain the unconscious, yet persuasive nature of making moral choices  
  • List the 5 components of the moral mind  
  • Analyze how individuals disengage from their ethical standards  

This program satisfies the Wisconsin Social Worker’s Ethics and Boundaries requirements for licensing. 

Who should attend

Social workers, counselors, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, substance abuse counselors, school psychologists, and other human service professionals


  • Headshot of David Mays

    Dr. David Mays (MD, Ph.D.) is a forensic psychiatrist and directed the forensic program at the Mendota Mental Health Institute in Madison, WI for 13 years. He serves on the clinical faculty at UW–Madison. Dr. Mays is the recipient of the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, The Distinguished Service Award from the Alliance for the Mentally Ill of Dane County, and the Exceptional Performance Award from the Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services. He has treated patients in hospital and outpatient settings with co-morbid substance use problems for 20 years. He is a seasoned clinician and highly sought-after presenter.

CEU Information

Participants will earn 2 Contact Hours upon completion of this program.

Additional CEU Information by Profession: 

Wisconsin Social Workers

Our programs qualify as continuing education offered by an accredited university. The State Board recognizes contact hours for all listed programs.

Wisconsin Substance Abuse Counselors

The Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services approves contact hours for programs consisting of relevant content taught by qualified presenters. Contact our office with questions about specific program approvals.

Wisconsin Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists

Our programs qualify as required continuing education offered by an accredited university. The State Board recognizes contact hours for all programs.

Wisconsin Licensed Counselors

Our programs qualify as required continuing education offered by an accredited university. The State Board recognizes contact hours for all programs.

Wisconsin Educators and School Psychologists

Continuing education programs from the University of Wisconsin campuses may qualify toward your Professional Development Plan (PDP).

Other Professions

Contact your professional board or organization for specific continuing education requirements.

Disability Accommodations

UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education encourages children and adults with disabilities or other special needs to participate in our programs whenever possible. If you require a reasonable accommodation, please notify us at least two weeks in advance of the program so that appropriate arrangements can be made. Contact Continuing Education at 715-836-3636 / toll-free 866-893-2423, or use the Wisconsin Relay System (711). All requests are kept confidential.

An EEO/Affirmative Action employer, University of Wisconsin provides equal opportunities in employment and programming, including Title IX and ADA requirements.

Register Online Register by Phone


Delivery format:

Final registration deadline:

Additional Information

This course meets via Zoom from 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on March 10, 2022. You will earn 2.0 CEUs upon completion of the program. Previous promotion incorrectly listed the CEUs earned as 4.0. 


Standard fee:

Fee includes fee includes online interactive instruction, digital materials