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Does Moral Education Improve Moral Judgment? A Meta-Analysis of Intervention Studies Using the Defining Issues Test

Andre Schlaefli, James R. Rest and Stephen J. Thoma
Review of Educational Research
Vol. 55, No. 3 (Autumn, 1985), pp. 319-352
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1170390
Page Count: 34
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Does Moral Education Improve Moral Judgment? A Meta-Analysis of Intervention Studies Using the Defining Issues Test
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Abstract

A review was conducted of 55 studies of education interventions designed to stimulate development in moral judgment. All studies used the Defining Issues Test. Various subject groups were involved (junior and senior high school students, college and graduate students, adults), various types of programs were employed (group discussion of moral dilemmas, psychological development programs, social studies and humanities courses), and the duration of the programs varied (a few hours to a year-long program). The principal findings from meta-analysis indicate that the dilemma discussion and psychological development programs produce modest overall effect sizes, that treatments of about 3 to 12 weeks are optimal, and that programs with adults (24 years and older) produce larger effect sizes than with younger subjects; however, significant effect sizes are obtained with all groups.

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