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Data Driven vs. Ethical Decision Making

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Date(s): Feb 07, 2022 - Feb 08, 2022
Time: 8:00AM - 12:00PM
Registration Fee: $139.00
Cancellation Date: Jan 31, 2022
Location: Online

Course Description

Big Data. Data-driven decision making. They are more than buzz words; they are requirements in today’s competitive business environment. Data empowers organizations to respond almost in real time, but does “fast” decision making it also create problems?

This session will explore the value of data and data-driven decision making, but also examine the pitfalls of decisions made solely using data. We will compare the difference between ethical decision making and data-driven decision making and how organizations can incorporate and embrace ethical decision making while still leveraging insights provided by data. We will also examine why critical thinking skills are so important when working with data and how data can be both unwittingly and willingly manipulated to alter perception and sometimes reality.

Potential CPE Credits: 8.0
Technical Hours: This class meets 8.0 CPE credits of technical training in compliance with Texas Admin. Code Rule 523.102.

Instruction Type: Live
Experience Level:
Category: Auditing

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Learn the benefits of data-driven decision-making

  • Understand the challenges and pitfalls of data-driven decision-making

  • Examine why critical thinking is crucial for working with and understanding data

  • Differentiate various ethical decision-making approaches

  • Understand the challenges to ethical decision-making

  • Learn to apply the ethical elements and dimensions to data-driven decisionmaking

Detailed Course Outline

Bad Data

• 7 Hazards that create the mirage of data

• 9 Data Challenges

• Good data standards

Data and Customers

• Behavioral Economics

• Understanding customer motivations

• Loyalty and points programs

People versus Data

• Is it okay if it is legal?

• Data-driven decision-making

• Law of unintended consequences

• Healthcare, credit cards, social media studies

Machine Learning and AI

• Artificial Intelligence, bots and machine learning explained

• Biases and the impact of the past

• Speed and insights

• Insights that aren’t insightful

Causation versus Correlation

• Causation versus correlation

• Collateral damage from correlation and causation

• Ethical dimensions of correlation and causation

Ethical Decision Making

• Data Doesn’t lie, or does it?

• Context, language, and framing

• Ethical blindness

• Emotions and reactions

Critical Thinking and Data

• Statistics

• Scale and perception

• Being fair with data

Data Supported Ethics Decision Making

• The role of gut instinct

• Data supported decisions

• Emotional Intelligence

• Varying perspectives

• Collaborative decision making


Professionals with at least 2 years' experience.


Mary Breslin

Mary Breslin is the Founder of Verracy Training & Consulting and specializes in Internal Audit transformations, Operational and Financial Auditing, Fraud Auditing & Investigations, and Corporate Accounting.


Ms. Breslin’s career spans over 20 years in Internal Auditing, Management and Accounting for companies such as ConocoPhillips, Barclays Capital, Costco Wholesale, Jefferson Wells and Boart Longyear. With significant International experience, she has managed audit programs in more than 50 countries. Most recently, Ms. Breslin held the title of Vice President and Chief Audit Executive where she transformed a checklist audit function into a value-add audit department which regularly delivered measurable business results through the use of risk-based auditing, data analytics, continuous education and skill development for her leadership team and staff.


Mary was an early adopter of analytics for audit and has been utilizing data analytics in her career in both audit and fraud work for over 15 years. She has transformed the capabilities of audit functions using data analytics programs using ACL, IDEA and Arbutus Analyzer. Through her expertise and guidance, she has helped large global organizations leverage analytics to significantly increase coverage, automate continuous auditing and monitoring, and actively fight fraud.


Additionally, Ms. Breslin has extensive Fraud Audit and Investigation experience and has conducted major fraud investigations on multiple continents including large scale federal cases domestically. She has developed and implemented fraud auditing programs in various industries focused on both accounting and operations.


Ms. Breslin attended Rutgers University and received her BS in accounting, and an MBA from the University of Phoenix while living and working overseas. She is a Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). She maintains memberships in the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), ISACA, the Society of Corporate Compliance (SCCE), and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) and is currently an instructor and conference speaker for the IIA, The ACFE and ISACA.

Additional Information

TAC Rule 523.142(g) requires the CPE Sponsor to monitor individual attendance and assign the correct number of CPE credits. Participants will be asked to document their time of arrival and departure in compliance with this Rule. Additionally, attendance will be monitored throughout the day and CPE certificates will reflect actual attendance of each participant.

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