Kohlberg Moral Development Essay

1798 words - 8 pages

Kohlberg's Moral Development
Crystal Bombay, Ruth A .Buissereth, Steven Odemns, Cherish Powell, and Steven Soranno
October 26, 2015
Shawn Davis

Kohlberg's Moral Development

Today’s discussion will evaluate Kohlberg’s theory on moral development and also Carol Gilligan research on moral reasoning. The topic will first summarize the theory of moral development by psychology’s pioneer Lawrence Kohlberg. The discussion will also have a compelling view of three approaches by Kohlberg to help individuals understand moral development. The topic will also give an explanation of three of limitations of the Kohlberg’s theory and how they work in individual’s lives. The discussion will then ...view middle of the document...

If child do not do the task right, he or she might have consequences, and with these consequences could come punishment. To avoid the punishment, they will do what is asked of them.
In the second level, there are stages three and four. Stage three is interpersonal relationships and stage four is maintaining social order. The second level has to deal with how an individual acts in society. In this level, an individual is looking for others to approve of what he or she doing for acceptance. They will do what it takes for other individuals to accept them. The last level, we deal with the last two stages, five and six. Stage five is the social contract and individual rights. Stage six is universal principles. The last level has to deal with individuals learning the well-being of others. They learn that others needs are important. Kohlberg thought each level and stage was important and fit together in a special way.
Kohlberg’s Contributions
Psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg came up with a theory about the development of children’s moral reasoning. In his theory, there are three levels and six stages of moral development. What children do to a certain extent for his or hers life is based upon their actions. Kohlberg classified these reasons according to levels of moral development. Kohlberg is a stage theorist. He believed that the stages of moral development always follow a specific sequence. People do not skip any stages or go backward. Children do advance at different rates, but not everyone reaches the highest stage. Preconvention moral reasoning is the first level. According to Kohlberg, through the age of nine, most children are at the preconvention level of moral development. Children base their judgments on the consequences of behavior. In stage 1, children believe that what is “good” is what helps them avoid any kind of trouble and at stage, 2 “good” is what satisfies a person’s needs.
Conventional is the second level. People who are at the level of conventional moral reasoning make judgments in terms of whether an act conforms to conventional standards of right and wrong. These standards come from family, religion, and society at large. At stage three, “good” is what meet one’s needs and the expectations of other people. Moral behavior is what most people would do in a given situation. Stage three moral judgments most often among thirteen year olds. In stage four; moral judgments are based on maintaining the social order. People will respect the law for authority. Stage four judgments most often occur among 16 year olds.
The third and last level is post conventional. Reasoning based on a person’s own moral standards of goodness is called post conventional moral reasoning. Moral judgments reflect one’s personal values, not conventional standards. In this stage, stage five, reasoning recognizes that laws represent agreed-upon certain steps, that laws have value and they are not violated without a good reason. Laws, though, cannot blind...

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