What Are The Three Levels Of Personal Moral Development Proposed By Kohlberg?
- Michael Davis
The Theory of Developmental Change by Kohlberg
By Saul McLeod , revised 2013 According to Kohlberg’s thesis, there are three phases of moral growth, one for each of the three degrees of moral development that are proposed to exist. Kohlberg proposed that humans progress through these phases in a predetermined order and that moral comprehension is tied to cognitive growth.
The preconventional, the conventional, and the postconventional stages of moral reasoning are the three levels of moral reasoning. Kohlberg demonstrated that the thought process behind a child’s decision was a more accurate reflection of their level of moral development than the decision itself by analyzing the replies children gave to a series of moral conundrums.
Piaget’s (1932) theory of moral development was something that Lawrence Kohlberg (1958) agreed with in principle, but Kohlberg sought to extend his views even further. He told them stories using Piaget’s approach for storytelling in order to present them with moral conundrums.
In each scenario, he posed a decision that must be made, such as between the rights of some authority and the requirements of some deserving individual who is being treated unfairly. One of the stories written by Kohlberg in 1958 that has gained the most notoriety is the one about a man named Heinz who lived in Europe.
The particular form of cancer that Heinz’s wife was suffering from was terminal. The doctors thought a new medication would be able to rescue her. The medicine had been found by a local chemist, and the Heinz company tried very hard to get some of it. However, the chemist was demanding ten times the amount of money it cost to create the drug, which was far more than the Heinz company could afford to pay at the moment.
Even with the assistance of his family and friends, Heinz was only able to raise fifty percent of the required amount. He broke the news to the pharmacist that his wife was ill and requested if he could get the medication at a reduced price or if he could pay the remainder of the bill at a later date.
The chemist did not agree, citing the fact that he was the one who had developed the medication and intended to profit from it. Later that night, the husband broke into the pharmacy and grabbed the medication since he was so intent on reviving his wife that he was willing to do anything.
What are the 3 levels of morality and the 6 Substages of morality?
See also: Lev Vygotsky’s Sociocultural Theory of Cognitive Development for further information on the stages of moral development. The six different steps might be broken down into three distinct degrees of moral thinking. In accordance with Piaget’s theory, it was improbable that the subjects’ moral growth would go backwards; rather, they advanced through the stages in the following order: pre-conventional, conventional, and then post-conventional. As a result of the fact that people can only achieve a more complete knowledge by building on their previous experiences, it is impossible to skip phases of moral development.
Stage 1 (Pre-Conventional) (Pre-Conventional)
- Obedience and a focus on punishment (How can I get out of being punished?) orientation.
- a preoccupation with one’s own interests (What are the benefits to me? pursuing something desirable)
Stage 2 (Conventional)
- Consonance and agreement between individuals (Social norms, good boy – good girl attitude)
- a mindset that upholds authority and the established social order (Law and order morality)
Stage 3 (Post-Conventional)
- Orientation toward social contracts (Justice and the spirit of the law)
- Principles of ethics that apply everywhere (Principled conscience)
Why is Kohlberg’s theory of moral development is important?
The significance of Kohlberg’s theory to the field of education – The following are some of the reasons why Kohlberg’s theory of moral formation is important in the classroom:
It gives educators the ability to comprehend the various degrees of moral comprehension possessed by their students.
- It helps instructors to provide appropriate counsel regarding moral behavior to the kids in their classrooms;
- It gives instructors the opportunity to assist students in developing sentiments of collaboration and respect for others, as well as respect for themselves;
It makes it easier for instructors to instill and encourage children’s development of positive moral principles, which in turn helps children become the best versions of themselves. It encourages children to study in a setting that is constructive and positive, which is beneficial to their development as individuals.
What is the level of moral reasoning in Kohlberg’s theory quizlet?
Terms included in this group (4) Stage one involves making ethical choices based on the anticipation of negative consequences. The second stage involves moral thinking that is directed by self-interest. The third stage is when we make moral judgments by complying to the norms of the people and things we value the most.
What is the first stage of Kohlberg’s theory of moral development?
The first stage of moral growth is known as preconventional morality, and it is the era in which conventional morality first emerges. It lasts until a child is around 9 years old. When children are this age, the expectations of adults and the penalties for disobeying the rules have a significant amount of influence over the decisions that they make.
Within this level, there are two different stages:
Stage 1: Obedience and Punishment This is one of the earliest phases of moral development, and it is most prevalent in young children. However, adults are also capable of articulating this kind of thinking.
Stage 2: According to Kohlberg, those who have reached this level view regulations as being unchangeable and unquestionable. Because disobeying the rules allows one to avoid getting in trouble, doing so is a very vital thing to do. In the second stage, known as “individualism and exchange,” Children who have reached the individuality and exchange stage of moral development are able to consider the perspectives of others and evaluate behaviors according to the extent to which they satisfy individual requirements.
How many levels of moral development are there in each stage?
The Three Major Stages of Moral Development Kohlberg’s Theory may be broken down into these three primary stages of moral development. There are two stages of growth that occur at each degree of moral development. Kohlberg argued that not everyone advances to the greatest stages of moral growth, similarly to how Piaget believed that not all persons achieve the highest levels of cognitive development.
What is conventional level?
The second level is known as the conventional level, and it typically takes place between the ages of 13 and 35. Individuals enter this stage of development when they begin to internalize the norms of adult role models in order to begin developing their own particular moral codes.
What age level is the conventional level?
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Page Identifier: 10519 Piaget’s study served as the foundation for Kohlberg’s (1963) investigation into the ways in which the way we reason about right and wrong shifts as we become older. He was curious in how people make judgments about what is morally acceptable and unacceptable. Kohlberg (1984) argued that we learn our moral values through active thinking and reasoning, and that moral development follows a series of stages, in the same way that Piaget believed that children’s cognitive development follows specific patterns.
Piaget also believed that children’s cognitive development follows specific patterns. In most cases, Kohlberg’s six steps may be broken down into three distinct degrees of ethical grounds. Kohlberg used toddlers, teens, and adults as subjects in his research of the formation of morality by presenting them with moral conundrums such as the following: The disease has spread throughout a man’s wife’s body, and there is only one treatment that might possibly save her.
The only location to get the medication is from the pharmacy owned by a man who is notorious for marking up the prices of the medications he sells. The guy only has $1,000 in his bank account, but the pharmacist demands $2,000 for it. He will not sell it to the man for less than that or allow him to make payments later. Should he have carried out those actions? Should I have done it or not? Why? (Kohlberg, 1984)
- At the first, preconventional stage of moral development, an individual’s moral reasoning is founded on ideas concerning retribution. The youngster has the misconception that if an activity results in a negative outcome, then that action must have been inappropriate. In the second stage, the child’s way of thinking is governed by self-interest and the desire to be rewarded. It’s like the old saying goes, “You scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours.” The responses of the participants’ younger selves appeared to be predicated on what would occur to the man as a direct consequence of the deed.
The man eventually becomes so desperate that he breaks into the drugstore and takes the medication. They would advise the man not to break into the drugstore, for instance, because the pharmacist might locate him and beat him.
Kohlberg’s 6 Stages of Moral Development
Or, they could recommend that the male break into the house, grab the drug, and then return home to a passionate kiss from his wife. Both choices were made on the basis of what would happen to the man’s body as a direct result of the action, regardless of whether or not such outcomes were desirable.
This is an example of a self-centered approach to the process of making moral decisions. He referred to this extremely simplistic view of what constitutes good and evil as preconventional morality. The concept of self-interest is at the center of preconventional morality.
Reward is sought after while punishment is avoided wherever possible. These stages can also be experienced by adults, particularly when they are feeling under a lot of strain.
- Those participants in the experiment who based their responses on their assumptions about what other people would think of the guy as a consequence of his behaviour were assigned to Level Two of the conventional morality scale. For example, they would suggest that he should rob the shop because then everybody would believe that he was a nice husband. On the other hand, they might advise that he shouldn’t do that since it is against the law. In either scenario, what other people believe about a situation is what determines what is good and wrong.
- In the third stage, the individual desires approval from other people;
- At the fourth stage, the individual understands the significance of social norms or regulations and desires to function effectively within the context of the group or society;
One definition of a wise choice is one that satisfies the requirements of the law or wins the favor of those around you. This is what he referred to as conventional morality, which is the idea that individuals are concerned about how their acts may affect other people. This line of thinking is utilized by certain older children, teenagers, and adults.
- At the third and final level of postconventional morality, right and wrong are derived from social contracts that have been made for the benefit of all individuals and that have the potential to go beyond the confines of social convention. For instance, the guy ought to break into the store even though doing so is against the law since his wife is dependent on the medication, and saving her life is more vital than avoiding the potential repercussions he could experience for breaching the law.
- Alternately, the guy shouldn’t do anything that would violate the concept of the right to property because maintaining social order is dependent on this guideline;
- In either scenario, the individual’s evaluation extends more than what takes place within the self;
It is predicated on a concern for other people, for society in general, or for an ethical norm as opposed to a legal standard. Because it goes beyond convention or what other people think to a higher, universal ethical principle of action that may or may not be represented in the law, this degree of moral growth is known as postconventional moral development.
It is important to note that this type of thinking is the kind of thinking that justices of the Supreme Court undertake every day when they deliberate whether a legislation is moral or ethical, which demands the ability to think abstractly.
It is fairly uncommon for this to take place until a person has reached their adolescent or adult years. At the fifth level, social contracts are seen to be equivalent to laws. When evaluating judgments and interpreting laws, we look to the motivations behind the laws, such as the pursuit of justice, equality, and dignity. Table 5 may be used to look back over the previous six steps.
|Young children- usually prior to age 9||Preconventional morality||Stage 1: Focus is on self-interest, and punishment is avoided. The man shouldn’t steal the drug, as he may get caught and go to jail. Stage 2: Rewards are sought. A person at this level will argue that the man should steal the drug because he does not want to lose his wife who takes care of him.|
|Older children, adolescents, and most adults||Conventional morality||Stage 3: Focus is on how situational outcomes impact others and wanting to please and be accepted. The man should steal the drug because that is what good husbands do. Stage 4: People make decisions based on laws or formalized rules. The man should obey the law because stealing is a crime.|
|Rare with adolescents and few adults||Postconventional morality||Stage 5: Individuals employ abstract reasoning to justify behaviors. The man should steal the drug because laws can be unjust, and you have to consider the whole situation. Stage 6: Moral behavior is based on self-chosen ethical principles. The man should steal the drug because life is more important than property.|
Although research has supported Kohlberg’s idea that the focus of moral reasoning shifts from an early emphasis on punishment and social rules and regulations to an emphasis on more general ethical principles, Kohlberg’s stage model is probably too simplistic. Piaget’s approach, on the other hand, is more sophisticated. People may use higher levels of thinking to solve some kinds of issues, but they may revert to using lower levels of reasoning in circumstances in which doing so is more compatible with their aims or beliefs (Rest, 1979).
At the sixth stage, universal ethical concepts that have been personally developed are balanced and considered in order to make moral judgements. Kohlberg stated that only a small percentage of people ever get to this point.
Second, it has been suggested that the stage model is most applicable to Western samples, as opposed to non-Western samples, since Western societies place a higher value on adherence to social norms, such as respect for authority, than do non-Western societies (Haidt, 2001).
In addition, the degree to which our behavior on the moral stages corresponds to how we act in the actual world is not always highly correlated with that score. The possibility that Kohlberg’s theory represents the moral growth of males better than it depicts the moral development of females is perhaps the most significant criticism of his theory.
Gilligan (1982) proposed that males, as a result of differences in their socialization, tend to place a higher priority on the concepts of justice and rights, whereas females place a higher weight on the concepts of caring for and assisting other people.
Although there is little evidence for a gender difference in Kohlberg’s stages of moral development (Turiel, 1998), it is true that girls and women tend to focus more on issues of caring for others, helping others, and connecting with others than do boys and men.
This is true even though there is little evidence for a gender difference in Kohlberg’s stages of moral development (Jaffee & Hyde, 2000).