Kohlberg 's Theory Of Moral Development

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In American education, teachers are focused on the intellectual growth of students. However, as educators, teachers not only have the opportunity to grow students intellectually, but also more holistically. One crucial area of a student’s life that is impacted by education is their morality. This paper will explore Kohlberg’s theory of moral development, which addresses the idea of a person 's progression of morality. It will first examine the concept of the theory and its founder. It will then follow with examples from classrooms today, and from my own personal experience as a K-12 student. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the implications of this theory for educational psychology, and encourage an implementation of it that will benefit teachers, students and ultimately society as a whole.
Concept and Origin Kohlberg believed that the aim of moral education was to stimulate students’ development of moral judgment. The desire to research the topic stemmed from Kohlberg’s criticism of traditional character education, which in his opinion focused solely on training of good “habits” of honesty, responsibility, etc., through example, reward, or punishment, instead of engaging students in a higher level of thinking and character assessment (Xiangdong, 2014). In order to give structure to his assessment of morality, Kohlberg defined six moral development stages, divided into three levels, based on empirical research. According to Shapiro, during the pre-conventional
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