NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ816131
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 66
ISSN: ISSN-0165-0254
Delinquency and Moral Reasoning in Adolescence and Young Adulthood
Raaijmakers, Quinten A. W.; Engels, Rutger C. M. E.; Van Hoof, Anne
International Journal of Behavioral Development, v29 n3 p247-258 2005
This article presents a longitudinal-sequential analysis of the developmental and reciprocal relationships between self-reported delinquency and moral reasoning (as measured with the Dutch version of the short form of the Defining Issues Test). Between 1991 and 1997 a large sample of 846 Dutch adolescents and young adults (15-23 years in 1991) was measured three times with an interval period of 3 years. Moral reasoning scores increased with age both cross-sectionally and longitudinally, while delinquency scores dropped sharply, "resulting in modest negative correlations between delinquency and moral reasoning". Structural equation modelling of the data delivered a satisfactory fit, "suggesting statistical reciprocal effects between delinquency and moral reasoning for the total sample". A multigroup analysis for three different age cohorts revealed a consistent negative effect of previous delinquency on moral reasoning between the ages of 21 to 23 years. Between the ages of 24 to 26 years, however, delinquency scores were, in turn, negatively affected by previous moral reasoning. Although substantial gender differences in delinquency were reported, no such differences were obtained for either moral reasoning or its relationship with delinquency. The results are discussed in view of the need for a multidimensional process approach of the relation between moral judgment and delinquency. (Contains 5 tables and 2 figures.)
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A