Lecturers have significant de facto power and responsibility as arbiters of student justice. However, while the literature on ethics in higher education principally focuses on a self-regarding agenda connected with research codes and power relationships between academics, the more practical concerns of pedagogy tend to be overlooked. Moreover, while many new lecturer programmes stress competence in teaching techniques they tend to give restricted attention to many of the ethical dilemmas which confront university teachers in their daily lives. This paper addresses this imbalance by presenting a conceptual framework for debating the ethics of pedagogy based on four forms of justice. The concepts of procedural, retributive, remedial, and distributive justice are presented as a means of incorporating many of the key ethical challenges that confront lecturers new to higher education. The justice framework is also recommended as a means of encouraging practitioners to identify their own key ethical principles. Copyright © 2001 Taylor & Francis Ltd.