NEASC INSTITUTIONAL SELF-STUDY
STANDARD ELEVEN: INTEGRITY
WHAT IS INTEGRITY?
Etymology: Middle English integrite, from Middle French integrité,
from Latin integritat-, integritas, soundness, from integr-,
whole, complete, entire. See
in Indo-European roots.
D) Date: 14th century
1. A strong sense of honesty and morality;
firmness of moral and ethical character (Wordsmyth).
Firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values (Merriam-Webster
Moral soundness; honesty; freedom from corrupting influence or motive; —used
especially with reference to the fulfillment of contracts, the discharge of
agencies, trusts, and the like; uprightness; rectitude (Webster's
Revised Unabridged Dictionary).
Steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code (The American
Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language)
quality of being honest and having strong moral principles that you refuse
to change (Cambridge
International Dictionary of English)
a) He showed great integrity when he refused
to lie for his employer.
b) The moral grandeur of independent integrity is the sublimest thing
in nature. —Buckminster.
No one doubted that Mr.
Harwood and Cianci were men of the highest integrity.
d) Their sober zeal, integrity, and worth. —Cowper.
Synonyms: honesty, uprightness, rectitude, probity, honor,
2. The state or quality of being entire or complete; wholeness;
entireness; unbroken state; as, the integrity of an empire or territory.
—Sir Thomas More (Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary,
© 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.).
The condition of being whole and
undamaged; soundness (Wordsmyth).
The quality or state of being complete or undivided (Merriam-Webster
An unreduced or unbroken completeness or totality [syn: unity, wholeness] (WordNet
® 1.6, © 1997 Princeton University).
a) Language continued long in its purity and integrity. —Sir M. Hale
b) A modern extension on the old building would ruin its architectural
c) The integrity of a building; the
integrity of our political system.
Synonyms: completeness, intactness, soundness, wholeness.
3. INTEGRITY: The quality of a person who can be counted upon to give
precedence to moral considerations, even when there is strong inducement to
let self-interest or some clamant desire override them, or where the
betrayal of moral principle might pass undetected. To have integrity is to
have unconditional and steady commitment to moral values and obligations.
For such a person, the fundamental question whether to conduct life on the
plane of self-concern or of moral seriousness has been decisively resolved,
though particular life situations will doubtless continue to put that
commitment to strenuous test. This moral commitment becomes a crucial
component in his or her sense of identity as a person: it confers a unity
(integration) of character, and even simplicity upon the man or woman of
integrity. What integrity cannot guarantee is the soundness of the value
judgments themselves, which form the core of that person’s commitment.
from R. W. Hepburn, in The Oxford Companion to Philosophy (NY: Oxford
University Press, 1995): 410.