Lawrence Kohlberg

Topics: Kohlberg's stages of moral development, Lawrence Kohlberg, Sociology Pages: 2 (610 words) Published: February 11, 2013
Lawrence Kohlberg
Lawrence Kohlberg was born in New York on October 25, 1927. Kohlberg went to the prestigious Phillips Academy in Massachusetts before enlisting in the Merchant Marines during World War II. When he left the military, Kohlberg enrolled in the University of Chicago and a few years later, he received his Ph.D. in psychology. He spent several years at Yale as a teacher before returning to the University of Chicago to accept a position on staff. In 1967, Kohlberg left Chicago to go to Harvard University, to join the staff of their Education and Social Psychology department. He was known for his theory of moral development which he popularized through research studies conducted at Harvard's Center for Moral Education, and he believed that there were six identifiable stages, which were divided in three parts. Kohlberg developed a six-stage theory of moral development, and he grouped these six stages into three, higher-order levels of development: 1) the Pre-Conventional Level, 2) the Conventional Level, and 3) the Post-Conventional or Principled Level. Each level is then further sub-divided into two stages to make a total of six stages. In the first level:

1. The first stage of this level is when people behave according to socially acceptable norms because they are told to do so by some authority figure. This obedience is compelled by the threat or application of punishment. The physical consequences of action determine its goodness or badness regardless of the human meaning or value of these consequences. 2. The second stage of this level is characterized by a view that right behavior means acting in one's own best interests. Right action consists of what instrumentally satisfies one's own needs and occasionally the needs of others. Human relations are viewed in terms such as those of the market place. In the second level:

1. The first stage of this level is characterized by an attitude which seeks to do what will gain the approval of...
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