Moral Education

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Considerations of the role schools should play in moral development of students are always the subject of controversy. In the article "The Aims of Education", John Mearsheimer claims that many American colleges pay little attention on moral education; instead, their aim is to teach their students how to think critically. In contrast, Wayne Booth shows strong disagreement about Mearsheimer's claim in his essay "Introducing Professor Mearsheimer to His Own University". He argues that many elite universities, such as the University of Chicago, provide the students with many courses that discuss ethical and moral issues in considerable depth. Despite Mearsheimer and Booth have different opinions on how a college should be involved in moral education, in general they both agree universities should play an active role in educating their students about ethical and moral issues. Mearsheimer claims that the University of Chicago is an amoral institution and says, ¡§ ... we are silent on the issue of morality, and instead we concentrate on teaching you to think critically¡¨ (151). I strongly disagree with Mearsheimer that critical thinking is opposed to moral reasoning; in fact, critical thinking skills are essential for college students to find moral values in various ways.

Mearsheimer believes that the University of Chicago is an amoral institution because it does not provide the students with moral guidance. He says to his students, ¡§I would bet that you will take few classes here at Chicago where you discuss ethics or morality in any detail, mainly because those kind of courses do not exist¡¨ (150). In contrast, I believe students could still find morals with their critical thinking skills, regardless of the number of courses that discuss moral issues in the university. By the time students enter college at the age around eighteen, most of them have already developed their own set of moral beliefs which they learned from their parents, previous education, church,...
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