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Functional differences: comparing moral judgement developmental phases of consolidation and transition

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Applying Snyder and Feldman's 1984 consolidation-transition model to moral judgement development has enabled further understanding of how moral judgement translates to moral functioning. In this study, 178 college students were identified as being in consolidated versus transitional phases of moral judgement development using Rest's Defining Issues Test (DIT). Participant moral functioning was inferred through an honest decision-making index along with Attitudes Towards Human Rights Inventory (ATHRI) and Volunteer Functions Inventory (VFI) scores. Multivariate Analyses of Variance revealed that the consolidated group was significantly more honest than the transitional group. No differences attributable to moral judgement phase were seen for ATHRI and VFI scores. Findings support the claim that consolidated phases improve the explanatory power of moral judgement for certain moral functional outcomes—particularly those involving ambiguity and minimal time for decision-making.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Alabama USA

Publication date: March 1, 2005

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