ERIC Number: ED196764
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Sep
Reference Count: 0
Moral Dilemmas of Young Adults.
Rest, James R.
This study describes moral dilemmas that young adults (ages 18-24) formulate spontaneously and examines the relationship between these dilemmas and the subjects' environment and scores on a standardized test. Fifty-two subjects were tested both in 1976 and 1978, creating 104 subject-oriented dilemmas. Thirty-two were in college, 17 were not, and three were in college at the first testing but had dropped out by the last testing. Participants completed a Defining Issues Test (DIT), Comprehension of Moral Attitudes Test, Law and Order Test of Political Attitudes, a written moral dilemma test, and a short personal questionnaire. At the end of the tests, students were asked to describe their own moral dilemmas. The most important findings of the study were that the moral dilemmas that young adults write about are extremely diverse and changeable over time. Subjects described their dilemmas from three perspectives: social issues such as abortion, gay rights, the arms race; personal problems; and general causes of human conflict such as greedy people and corrupt governments. Subjects with more education tended to relate slightly more social dilemmas. Females gave proportionally more personal and social dilemmas; males recorded proportionally more general cause dilemmas. A comparison with the DIT scores did not show that any of the dilemma types were developmentally more advanced. (Author/KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis.
Note: For a related document, see SO 013 042.