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RUNNING HEAD: KOHLBERG’S MORAL DEVELOPMENT1Kohlberg’s Moral DevelopmentUniversity of PhoenixLearning Team BKimberly Hales, Erica Mariscal, Laura MoralesPSYCH/600Sarah Dross
RUNNING HEAD: KOHLBERG’S MORAL DEVELOPMENT2Kohlberg’s Moral DevelopmentMoral development is a part of a person’s overall development, which happens over the course of a lifetime. There have been many theories that describe how and when moral development occurs in individuals, but one theory that has become well known andaccepted in the field of psychology is Lawrence Kohlberg’s Theory of Moral Development. Kohlberg’s model is a stage theory that explains various stages of moral thought people undergo in a lifetime. Like most theories, Kohlberg’s is widely criticized and faced with limitations. This paper will explore Kohlberg’s Theory of Moral Development, explain contributions that Kohlberg made to the understanding of moral development, it will also explain and describe the limitations of Kohlberg’s moral development theory. This paper will also explain who Carol Gilligan is, her contributions and what her research states about gender differences and moral reasoning. Kohlberg’s TheoryKohlberg was influenced by Piaget’s work on moral judgment. His theory was developed from a psychological and a philosophical point of view. He developed his theory by interviewing boys ranging in age from 10- to 16- year old using hypothetical dilemmas and asking them what the main character should do and why. He followed his participants and re-interviewed them in 3- to-4- year intervals for 20 years. (Berk, 2010) “The Heinz Dilemma” is Kohlberg’s most popular dilemma. He questions the value of not stealing against the value of saving a dying person. In this dilemma a Heinz’s wife becomes ill, and he can’t afford the only drug that can save her. He borrows money from those he trusts, but still cannot afford it, so he steals the drug to save his
RUNNING HEAD: KOHLBERG’S MORAL DEVELOPMENT3dying wife (Berk, 2010). “Kohlberg emphasized that it is the way an individual reasons about the dilemma, not the content of the response, that determines moral maturity.” (Berk, 2010) Their answers were based and categorized into six stages of reasoning.