Skip to main content

Moral Education Research

The articles gathered in this section explore issues in moral development and decision-making (how do we actually make moral decisions and how might we do so better?) and ethics education (what types of pedagogical techniques, if any, are effective in the case of ethics and why?).

Most of the readings encountered in a typical college ethics course concern either normative ethical theories (primarily Utilitarianism, Kantianism, and Virtue Ethics) or the application of ethics to specific social issues, such as abortion or animal rights.  While such readings help inform students about big-picture theories and the debates surrounding particular issues of controversy, they are not particularly helpful to those of us seeking to improve the effectiveness of ethics instruction.

The articles in this section have been gathered with that aim in mind.  The hope is to provide an instructor teaching an ethics lesson with some grounded information about how it is that we actually approach ethics-laden situations and some guiding theory to utilize that information to improve teaching effectiveness.

It is worth stressing here that reading any of these articles is not a prerequisite for bringing ethics into your classroom.  In fact, many faculty teaching courses in ethics do not have strong familiarity with such literature and are able to provide interesting and effective courses.  Instead, these readings should be viewed as a helpful supplement for effective ethics pedagogy.