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Piagets cognitive stages of development serve as the underpinnings for Kohlbergs

theory, but Kohlberg suggested that there are six stages of moral development. These
stages, he argued, are universal. Development from one stage to another, said Kohlberg
is fostered by opportunities to take the perspective of others and to experience confict
beteen ones current stage of moral thinking and the reasoning of someone at a higher
The Kohlberg Stages:
!. Preconventional reasoning is the loest level of moral reasoning, said
Kohlberg. "t this level, good and bad are interpreted in terms of external reards
and punishments.
Stage 1. Heteronomous moralit
Stage 2. !n"ivi"ualism# instrumental $ur$ose# an" e%change
#. &onventional reasoning is the second, or intermediate, level in Kohlbergs
theory of moral development. "t this level, individuals apply certain standards, but
they are the standards set by others, such as parents or the government.
Stage 3. 'utual inter$ersonal e%$ectations# relationshi$s# an"
inter$ersonal con(ormit
Stage 4. Social sstems moralit
$. Postconventional reasoning is the highest level in Kohlbergs theory of moral
development. "t this level, the individual recogni%es alternative moral courses,
explores the options, and then decides on a personal moral code.
Stage 5. Social contract or utilit an" in"ivi"ual rights
Stage 6. )niversal ethical $rinci$les
E&OLOG!&*L THEORY + )rie Bron(enbrenner
Bron(enbrenners ecological theor &'ronfenbrenner, !()*, #++,- 'ronfenbrenner .
/orris, !((), #++*0 holds that development refects the infuence of several
environmental systems.
,ive environmental sstems:
The microsystem is the setting in hich the individual lives. These contexts include
the persons family, peers, school, and neighborhood.
The mesosystem involves relations beteen microsystems or connections beteen
contexts. 1xamples are the relation of family experiences to school experiences,
school experiences to religious experiences, and family experiences to peer
The exosystem consists of links beteen a social setting in hich the individual does
not have an active role and the individuals immediate context.
The macrosystem involves the culture in hich individuals live.
The chronosystem consists of the patterning of environmental events and transitions
over the life course, as ell as socio2historical circumstances.
3141315617 8ife29pan Development. !$
ed. 9antrock, :. #+!!. pp. #)2#(, $!(2$#!