Consistency between preconventional and conventional moral judgments and behaviour among 15–17-year-old adolescents living in foster care: Four case studies

Goda Juškėnienė, Dalia Nasvytienė

Abstract


The present research was aimed at assessing consistency between moral judgments and real behaviour of adolescents living in foster care institutions. Instrumental case study research was chosen for its potential to reveal the role of the context and to detect individual peculiarities.

Kohlberg’s theory of moral development was chosen as a theoretical basis for its strength to detaile adolescents’ moral judgment. Problematic aspects of under-representation of gender issues and sensitivity to the context were also addressed. Moral Judgment Interview (Colby & Kohlberg, 1987b) was carried out to assess the issues, norms, and elements of moral judgment, while a semi-projective Rotter Incomplete Sentence Blank (Jaworowska & Matczak, 2008) was applied to evaluate the subjects’ attitudes toward rules and emotionally significant concerns. There were 4 participants of the research (2 females: one characterized by rule-obedient behaviour, the other – by rule-violent behaviour; the same criteria were applied for 2 males). Their biographic data sequences were set up (Wengraf, 2008).

The research findings revealed that the conventional level of moral judgments is consistent with both rule-obedient behaviour and rule-violating behaviour, and preconventional reasoning is characteristic of the rule-violating girl. The structure of moral judgment is similar both to the boys and the girls, while their subjective concerns differ: the girls are preoccupied with family issues, whereas the boys’ preoccupation deals with wider interpersonal relationships, hobbies, and personal boundaries.

Keywords: Kohlberg, Moral judgment interview, preconventional and conventional moral stages, instrumental case study.

How to cite: Juškėnienė, G., & Nasvytienė, D. (2016). Globos namuose gyvenančių paauglių moralinių sprendimų lygmens ir pagarbos taisyklėms dermė: keturių atvejų analizė [Consistency between preconventional and conventional moral judgments and behaviour among 15–17-year-old adolescents living in foster care: Four case studies]. Ugdymo psichologija, 27, 5–34. http://dx.doi.org/10.15823/up.2016.06


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