Kohlbergs Theory

Topics: Kohlberg's stages of moral development, Jean Piaget, Morality Pages: 5 (1296 words) Published: September 10, 2013
PSYCHOLOGY 112

Table of contents:
* Introduction
* Definition of Kohlberg’s Theory
* Advantage in Kohlberg’s Theory
* Disadvantage in Kohlberg’s Theory
* Opinion
* Recommendation

Introduction

Lawrence Kohlberg's stages of moral development constitute an adaptation of a psychological theory originally conceived by the Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget. The theory holds that moral reasoning, the basis for ethical behavior, has six identifiable developmental stages, each more adequate at responding to moral dilemmas than its predecessor. Kohlberg determined that the process of moral development was principally concerned with justice, and that it continued throughout the individual's lifetime, a notion that spawned dialogue on the philosophical implications of such research. For his studies, Kohlberg relied on stories such as the Heinz dilemma, and was interested in how individuals would justify their actions if placed in similar moral dilemmas. He then analyzed the form of moral reasoning displayed, rather than its conclusion, and classified it as belonging to one of six distinct stages Kohlberg's six stages can be more generally grouped into three levels of two stages each: pre-conventional, conventional and post-conventional. Following Piaget's constructivist requirements for a stage model, as described in his theory of cognitive development, it is extremely rare to regress in stages—to lose the use of higher stage abilities. Stages cannot be skipped; each provides a new and necessary perspective, more comprehensive and differentiated than its predecessors but integrated with them. Kohlberg’s Theory

The stage of Moral Development/Moral Reasoning
1. Pre-conventional level
2. Conventional level
3. Post-conventional level

..Psychologist, studied the reasoning ability & recognizing where a child is at according to stages can help identify how child may feel about illness ,moral reasoning & cognitive stages of development.

LEVEL| STAGE/YEARS| CHARACTERISTICS| Pre conventional| Stage 1(2 to 3 y/o)Stage 2(4 to 7 y/o)| Obedience and punishment orientation(How can I avoid punishment?) A child tell him the right thing because he was told to do so to avoid punishment.--Self-interest orientation(Paying for a benefit)Child caries out actions to satisfy his own needs rather than the society’s.The child does something for another if he gets something in return.| Conventional| Stage 3(7/10 y/o)Stage 4(10/12 y/o)| Interpersonal accord and conformity(The good boy/good girl attitude)A child follows rules because of a need to be good person in own eyes & in the eyes of the others...Authority and social-order maintaining orientation(Law and order morality)A child follows rules of authority figures as well as parents to keep the system working.| Post conventional| Stage 5(older than 12y/o)Stage 6(older than 12 y/o)| Social contract orientation(Utilitarian Law Making Perspective)A child follow standards of society for the good of people...Universal ethical principles(Principled conscience)A child follows internalized standards of conduct.|

Advantages of the Kohlberg's theory

The ability to empirically test the individual for where they are in their moral development, along with offering a basic structure for creating "just communities" applicable both within and outside student affairs. Moreover, Kohlberg's model offers insight as to why an individual may be seeking out justice based on what stage they are in. 2. Kohlberg’s theory essentially provides a roadmap for moral thinking that otherwise did not exist. 3. It inadvertently offers benchmarks for where one might be in their moral development based on their life situation. 4. Offering a structure for "just communities." It was Kohlberg’s hope that he would employ his theory to create communities that were collaborative, held each other accountable, and had philosophical and...
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