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Moral Reasoning- Influences and Contrasting views

Moral Reasoning- Influences and Contrasting views



Do They Think These Moral Dilemmas Accurately Assess Moral Reasoning? Why Or Why Not? Reflect On Your Own Moral Code.

Where Did You Learn This? What Influences Determined Your Moral Reasoning?

Think About And Consider Factors That Impact Development As Discussed In This Course (Income/Ses, Culture, Religion, Family Structure, Town/City/County/State Factors, Educational Access, Etc.).


The moral reasoning of humans through judgments of hypothetical dilemmas enhance their emotions which make them take a moral judgment in future (Sevinc & Spreng, 2014). This paper aims to study the two dilemmas of Kohlberg both having relevance in terms of family relations to reflect on the contrasting moral codes of me and my friend (“Kohlberg dilemmas,” 2020).

According to my friend in Dilemma I, as Joey has earned the money with his toil and effort in the paper industry in order to save the amount for his camping trip, keeping the money for himself instead of giving it to his father will be the most responsible action to commit (“Kohlberg dilemmas,” 2020). Instead of keeping the promise, the father asks his son to provide him the money earned in hard work to utilize in his fishing trip with friends which is not justified at the end. This falls under the scale 2, second stage of moral development called Instrumental Orientation where the moral behavior is oriented as serving one’s own best interests on the cost of other’s needs (Malti & Ongley, 2014). Judging as per external consequences, the fulfillment of personal needs is given due importance. My friend suggests that it is not necessary to always meet and obey our parents by sacrificing our passions even that demands us to be selfish in certain situations (Margoni, 2017).

According to me in Dilemma II, as Judy has earned a fair amount of money and kept it a secret from her mother for the sake of attending the concert, the most responsible action for Louise will be tell her mother that her sister lied regarding the money (“Kohlberg dilemmas,” 2020). In a mother-daughter’s relationship, although a mother being an elderly figure promises but fails to keep it in future, lying to your mother for fulfillment of certain desires is not appreciated by me (Rizzo, Burkholder and Killen, 2019). This falls under the scale 4, third stage of moral development called Law and order orientation where the morality lies in conforming to rules supposed to be obeyed as a norm. As per my opinion, the moral decision should not hold any bias be it your blood relation or others. The punishment or the reward should be same for everyone. Louise being an elder sister should never support this intolerable behavior of her sibling. (Mercier, 2017).


The two different dilemmas although sharing similarity in terms of showing the parent-child relationship, yet the decision taken by the subject here is different. The first dilemma reveals how the boy takes the decision and the second dilemma portrays the reasoning of elder sibling in the family.

My moral reasoning is influenced by my age where I have a reached a certain period of maturity in adulthood to distinguish between the right and wrong from a non-biased perspective. The norms and laws are followed in the adulthood with a goal of meeting justice. It is also influenced by the culture of my family through values of love, trust, loyalty and cooperation towards each other. The protective nature of parenting style as well as guidance in every crucial stages has evolved my decision-taking capability at any situations. The environment of school where I have learnt principles of sincerity and honesty in every action has taught me to take moral decisions in the right direction without compromising the ethics. The friends and social groups I dwell with has influenced my reasoning through control of negative emotions like anger, jealousy, greed and encourage more positive emotions like care, dependence and gratitude towards others.

The moral development gets hugely formed by the size of family in which an individual lives. The joint families with grandparents make the children at an early age adopt the spiritual and traditional values than nuclear and single-parent families. The parenting style and the environment of home frame the moral development too. Individuals having an abusive childhood develops negative reasoning skills and take decisions which can offer harmful consequences in future. The children raised in discipline and rules follow the strict conduct of the house and in future take better informed decisions. In terms of geographic location a child from rural and poverty ridden background will have different moral reasoning than an urban child residing in a good lifestyle. Also, a person with low income will resort to crimes to fulfill his desires than a high income-earning individual who is already satisfying the present desires. The hunger of satisfying of the desires is seen more in people with low income, money being the most dominant factor here. The level of education also play a crucial role in proper reasoning of situations in front of us. A minimum literate individual as compared to highly knowledgeable person will base his or her reasoning in terms of limited information and values.

The gender being the most dominant factor in moral development suggests that women are more matured in taking moral decisions than men. The moral values varies between these two types of gender- the men seek self-justice at their own terms while the women put other’s preferences at first to go for decisions on moral grounds.


In conclusion, my moral code is more of a care orientation to create a harmonious relationship be it mitigating the differences in a family whereas the moral code of my friend is concerned more on achievement of personal desires than showing care for family. Finally, the paper presents the fact that level of education, size and culture of family along with parenting styles, income-level, geographic location and gender play crucial roles in shaping the moral development of an individual right from childhood.


Kohlberg dilemmas. (2020). Retrieved January 15, 2020, from website:

Malti, T., & Ongley, S. F. (2014). The development of moral emotions and moral reasoning. Handbook of moral development, 2, 163-183.

Margoni, F. (2017). Expectations of Obedience and the Development of Moral Reasoning (Doctoral dissertation, University of Trento).

Mercier, H., Castelain, T., Hamid, N., & Marín-Picado, B. (2017). The power of moral arguments. In Moral Inferences (pp. 115-130). Psychology Press.

Rizzo, M. T., Li, L., Burkholder, A. R., & Killen, M. (2019). Lying, negligence, or lack of knowledge? Children’s intention-based moral reasoning about resource claims. Developmental psychology, 55(2), 274.

Moral Reasoningp- Influences and Contrasting views


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