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ERIC Number: ED408099
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Apr
Pages: 16
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
A Comparison of the Moral Reasoning Skills of 4th and 6th Grade Children in Mexico and the U.S.: Gender, Care/Justice Orientation, & Culture.
Hinke, Katherine Haas; And Others
This study investigated gender, developmental, and cross-cultural differences in the moral reasoning of 97 middle- and upper-middle class fourth and sixth graders in Mexico and the United States. A seven-item questionnaire from the Comprehension Subsections of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (Revised and III) dealing with moral standards and responsibilities was given to students, with both English and Mexican Spanish versions available in Mexico. Written responses were assessed to yield a cognitive-developmental score, a rating for care or justice orientation, and a rating for either a care, justice, both, or neither, response. Alternative solutions to the moral situations were content analyzed. Findings revealed that sixth graders had higher cognitive/developmental scores than fourth graders, with females having higher scores than males only in sixth grade. There were no significant gender, grade, or cultural differences in traditional care/justice orientation ratings. Sixth graders had a higher proportion of "both" and lower proportion of "neither" than did fourth graders. More females selected the complex category of "both" than did males, with the difference greater at the sixth than at the fourth grade level. Males in the United States scored higher than U.S. females on the care category, with the reverse the case for Mexican subjects. Qualitative analysis suggested cultural influences on moral reasoning responses, with Mexican children more likely than U.S. children to look for the owner of a found purse rather than the police, and to be concerned about control/organization in rule-guided games and privacy rights in voting. (Contains 14 references.) (KB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Mexico; United States