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ERIC Number: ED263516
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985
Pages: 26
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
In Response to Walker's (1984) Review on Sex Differences in Moral Development.
Blake, Catherine A.
Lawrence Walker's (1984) meta-analysis of 108 samples concluded that there are no sex differences in stages of moral reasoning. This paper reviews Walker's work and points out that some of his analyses, however, are controversial and favored unwarranted conclusions. Walker neither tested the hypothesis that males are more advanced than females in their moral reasoning nor did he address the allegation that Kohlberg's theory tends to underestimate the moral reasoning of women. Instead, the null hypothesis tested was that of no relationship between gender and moral reasoning. Walker's use of the Stouffer statistic and his assuming exact findings of no sex differences for many samples seem to have ensured support of the null hypothesis. Use of the counting method revealed that more samples reported gender differences in moral reasoning than would be expected if the null hypothesis were true. Observations suggest that Walker may have underestimated the extent of possible sex bias in Kohlberg's theory and scoring system. Walker's attributing his claim that his review probably overestimated the incidence of sex differences in stages of moral development to the file-drawer concept seems improper. Furthermore, Walker's vote counting analysis is biased in favor of no sex difference findings and his discursive narrative review does not seem to adhere to an explicit analytic procedure. His findings do not really indicate that there is no relationship between sex and moral reasoning, and they definitely do not suggest that further research in this area is inappropriate. (ABB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A