ERIC Number: ED087523
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1973-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
An Experimental Test of Piaget's Theory of Moral Development.
This study investigated experimentally some of Piaget's hypotheses on the causes of moral judgemental change. The measure of moral judgement chosen was a child's standard of evaluating moral responsibility, on an objective (choice based on consequences) - subjective (choice based on intentions) dimension. Subjects were 72 first and second graders who were classified as objective or subjective according to their reasoning about moral judgements on a pre-test. Two to four weeks after pretesting, children were divided into 4 experimental groups and a control group. In Group I (Decentering), subjects were trained to consider both consequences and intentions. Group II (Peer interaction) subjects were divided into pairs, one objective and one subjective child, who explained their reasoning processes to each other. Group III (Exposure to adult conflict) listened to an objective and a subjective adult argue about which choice was correct, and Group IV (Didactic rule training) subjects were told that one particular choice was correct. Children were posttested one month later. All training conditions produced significant increases in subjective judgements, whereas controls exhibited no change from pretest to posttest. Results are analyzed separately for each training condition, with discussion focusing on evidence that might contradict Piaget's theory. (DP)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: State Univ. of New York, Cortland. Coll. at Cortland.