"Intermediate" Concepts and the Connection to Moral Education

Muriel J. Bebea, Stephen J. Thoma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


This paper provides a brief overview of Rest's (1983) conception of the important processes that contribute to effective moral decision making, summarizes efforts to design and assess moral education programs based on Rest's Four-Component Model, and describes new directions in the assessment of moral judgment development that are specifically directed toward professional ethics education. Based on preliminary studies, we recommend that, in addition to measuring each of the processes in Rest's model, educators design profession-specific measures of moral concepts that better reflect the content of professional ethics education. Labeled intermediate concepts measures, these assessments attend to concepts that are more specific than the abstract moral schemas tested by Kohlbergian measures of moral judgment and more general than concrete codes of professional ethics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)343-360
Number of pages18
JournalEducational Psychology Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1999


  • Assessing ethical development
  • DIT
  • Four-Component Model
  • Moral judgment
  • Professional ethics

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