Our speaker will be:
Abstract: Classic work on moral development was focused on information-processing: how people responded to moral dilemmas was diagnostic of the moral person. Recently, the re-invigoration of a long-neglected personality approach regards morality more broadly as related to character (Hill & Roberts, 2010). Although useful frameworks exist for identifying and classifying traits that represent good character (character strengths, Big Five personality subcomponents), the current work examines morality at the broadest, most explicit level. The current study tracked over 200 participants, who are at the outset of the formative period of emerging adulthood, longitudinally across their first two college years. Several questions about moral development were pursued: Do people see themselves as typically behaving morally? Do those views change over time? Are moral self-views fatally biased or can they predict people’s character traits and important outcomes? Results suggest moral self-views capture some character traits but not all, and predict life goals, moral concerns, integrity, and adjustment in revealing ways.
Doreen Simonsen and Stephanie DeGooyer
Faculty Colloquium Coordinators