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ERIC Number: EJ831350
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 27
ISSN: ISSN-1076-0180
Exploring the Impact of Service-Learning on Moral Development and Moral Orientation
Bernacki, Matthew L.; Jaeger, Elizabeth
Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, v14 n2 p5-15 Spr 2008
Research on Service-learning's (SL) impact on students' moral development has been "mixed." In this study, 46 students in SL and non-SL sections of comparable courses offered at a northeastern Catholic university completed the Defining Issues Test, the Moral Justification Scale, and the SL Outcome Scale at the beginning and end of a semester. Although scores on moral development and orientation did not change significantly, SL students reported becoming more compassionate and more sensitive, having a greater understanding of and ability to solve social problems, and possessing a greater efficacy to make the world better. While a single-semester exposure to SL may be too limited to affect moral development, participants' self-reported changes may be precursors to such developmental changes. Unfortunately, existing measures of moral orientation may preclude a thorough examination of change associated with SL. Future research would benefit from using tools that measure moral thinking and action, and understanding of hypothetical moral principles. (Contains 6 tables.)
Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning, University of Michigan. 1024 Hill Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-3310. Tel: 734-647-7402; Fax: 734-647-7464; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A