Moral reasoning development and graduate education

Stephen J. Thoma, Mark L Davison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The Defining Issues Test (DIT) of moral reasoning development was administered to 20 advanced and 20 first-year graduate students, plus 40 college graduates matched to the graduate groups on sex, age, and verbal ability. A two-way ANOVA design was used to infer whether graduate education, selection, maturation, or a combination of these effects is (are) associated with group differences on the DIT. Results suggest that differences found between the graduate students and college graduates can be accounted for by a combination of maturational and selection effects, contrary to the hypothesized effects of formal education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)227-238
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Developmental Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1983

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
* This research was supported by a National Academy of Education Spencer Fellowship to the second author. Address all correspondence to Stephen J. Thoma, Department of Educational Psychology, 330 Burton Hall, 178 Pillsbury Drive, S.E., University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 5545.5.


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