Moral Development : Theory and Applications book cover
2nd Edition

Moral Development
Theory and Applications

ISBN 9780367271978
Published March 22, 2022 by Routledge
264 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Moral Development offers a comprehensive overview of classic and current theories of moral development and applications of these theories in various counseling and educational settings. It examines changes across time and experience in how people understand right and wrong, and individual differences in moral judgements, emotions, and actions.

Elizabeth C. Vozzola and Amie K. Senland review the latest research in the field and integrate classic work with contemporary perspectives on assessment and treatment. Part 1 provides an understanding of a range of theories, explaining their strengths and challenges, and offering examples of how these theories apply to helping professionals. It covers Freud, Piaget, Kohlberg, Rest, Gilligan, Nodding, Bandura, Turiel, Nucci, Narvaez, Haidt, and Shweder. Part 2 highlights promising applications of moral development theory in education and counseling. Fully updated with new chapters on faith development and moral and prosocial development in infancy and early childhood, the text explores specific approaches to helping clients with a variety of clinical or developmental challenges and provides an excellent resource for courses addressing the CACREP program objectives for Human Growth and Development. It also integrates issues of gender, ethnicity, and culture throughout to prepare readers for practicing in a global culture and presents a new perspective: the cultural developmental approach. Illustrated throughout with examples that highlight applications of moral development concepts in today’s media, it also includes interviews from some of today’s leading theorists and practitioners.

Ideal as a text for advanced courses on moral development and moral psychology, as well as courses on human, child, social and personality development taught in psychology, counseling, education, human development, family studies, social work, and religion. Its applied approach also appeals to mental health and school counselors.

Table of Contents

PART I Moral Development in the 21st Century: Theoretical Roots and New Directions 1. Introduction 2. Classic Theories of Morality: Freud and Piaget 3. From Stages to Schemas: Kohlberg and Rest 4. Theoretical Challenges to Classic Cognitive Developmental Models 5. The Rise of Theories from Neuroscience and Evolutionary Perspectives 6. The Origins of Morality and Prosocial Behavior in Early Childhood 7. Global Perspectives: A Sampling of Research and Issues 8. Conclusion: In a Different Mind PART II Applications of Theory to Practice 9. Applied Moral Education: Accomplishments, New Directions, and Morality (and Lack Thereof) in the Media 10. Developmental Therapy: Helping Clients Grapple with Core Moral Issues 11. When Development Goes Awry: Deficits in Moral and Empathic Development 12. The Role of Faith, Religion, and Spirituality in Morality 13. Conclusion: How to Live and What to Do?

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Elizabeth C. Vozzola is a Professor Emerita of Psychology and former Director of the Honors Program at the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford, CT, USA.

Amie K. Senland is a Lecturer and Laboratory Coordinator of Psychology at Trinity College in Hartford, CT, USA.


‘In the new (second) edition of Moral development: Theory and Application, Elly Vozzola and Amie Senland take the reader on a sweeping journey through a vast landscape of research, theories, disciplines, and applications related to the formation of human goodness. The scope of this work is truly impressive and often challenges the reader to reconsider much of what we all take for granted; that is, that we know right from wrong. The world would be a far better place if we all thought as deeply about morality and how to nurture it as do these authors.’

- Marvin W. Berkowitz, Sanford N. McDonnell Professor of Character Education, UM System Thomas Jefferson Fellow, Center for Character and Citizenship University of Missouri-St. Louis, MO, USA.

'This book is a must-read for anyone who is in the field of moral development—or who wants to be. Warm, approachable, and yet deeply informative, it occupies a unique niche in the field of morality. Beginning with theory but emphasizing application, grounded in historical context, it provides a good introduction to a field that has a moral imperative to span the gap between theory and practice. Questions at the end of each chapter encourage applying a moral lens to one’s life and are clearly informed by the "just community" method. As one who teaches moral development, who believes that moral education is critical for today’s world and who cares about the next generation, I will be assigning this book.'

- Kaye Cook, Professor of Psychology and Department Chair at Gordon College, MA, USA, and former president of the Association for Moral Education (AME).

Praise for the first edition:

**Awarded 2014 Choice Outstanding Academic Title and 2015 AERA Moral Development/Moral Education SIG Book Award**

"This is an excellent resource for those teaching courses in human development, specifically courses needed by individuals seeking licensing and accreditation (e.g., social work, psychology) from licensing boards with defined cognitive objectives in the area of human growth and development (e.g., CACREP). In addition, the book is valuable for those wishing to get up to speed on the topic of moral development and those struggling with individuals with moral issues. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates, graduate students, professionals, general readers."

- R.E. Osborne, Texas State University, in CHOICE, September 2014 

"Moral Development is a unique book in that it so effectively provides extensive coverage of the theoretical side of moral development but also serves as a very useable guide for those who are interested in moral development from an educational or therapeutic standpoint."

- Michelle Stroffolino Schmidt, PsycCRITIQUES

"Vozzola masterfully delves into controversial areas with finesse, examines unresolved disputes without hesitation and throughout it all maintains a friendly writing style. The book will engage students, broaden their imaginations, and guide them in practical application. I plan to use it in my courses and strongly endorse it for every undergraduate course addressing moral development!"

 - Darcia Narvaez, University of Notre Dame, USA

"Elly Vozzola leads aspiring professionals through the hills and valleys of moral psychology. Hers is a thoughtful survey of the evolution of moral development accompanied by useful triggers for reflection and discussion. As a textbook it is invitingly written and I would warmly commend it to teachers wishing to introduce their students to a sensitive account of moral development."

- James Conroy, University of Glasgow, UK

"Moral Development is just the sort of book the field has been waiting for. Clear, accessible, and comprehensive, this text also brings students into the current debates in the field involving neuroscience and evolutionary theory in a clear and lively way."

 - Sharon Lamb, University of Massachusetts-Boston, USA

"Many students struggle with combining theory and practice and this book serves as a nice model of this important connection. ... [It] provides the reader with concrete examples of how moral development is carried out in therapy. ...This book adds a great deal to the existing literature in the field in an accessible and useful manner."

- Stefanie Sinno, Muhlenberg College, USA

"Vozzola has a lively writing style, which students will appreciate ... By using very practical examples and memorable interview quotations, Vozzola provides a very interesting survey of the variety of perspectives and a compelling case for their usefulness. ... I would use and recommend it. I believe it would be very useful to students and teachers."

- John R. Snarey, Emory University, USA

"The writing style ... is personal and "down to earth" ... like reading a good novel. ... Most texts review Piaget, Kohlberg and Gilligan. ... This text goes beyond that in terms of both theory and application. ... It is appropriate for graduate and upper division undergraduate courses. ... I would consider adopting this book. ... After providing a theoretical foundation ... the author then looks at the current research from a cultural perspective and ... helps the student apply both theory and research in order to utilize the knowledge learned."

- Rebecca J. Glover, University of North Texas, USA

"In this work, Elizabeth Vozzola tackles an important challenge: to provide a balanced, comprehensive review of moral development theory and applications for a broad audience. She is up to the task, building on her decades of experience in the field to offer, in under 200 pages, an integrated and thoughtful outline that will be especially relevant for advanced undergraduate and graduate students preparing for work in education and the helping professions... The book incorporates various integrative and pedagogical features, including interviews with prominent theorists in the field, and well-presented tables that compare and contrast salient features of relevant theories and programmes. This text will also prove useful for those in cognate fields who want a current overview of moral development and education. Vozzola’s writing style is informal and she shares many incidents from her own journey as a teacher in the field... Vozzola’s goal is to prime moral interest and provide tools for the journey. To this end she succeeds admirably, providing a historical sweep of the field of moral development and a sense of its complexity and potential. I suspect the book will prompt many new to the field to rethink their moral assumptions as well as consider further study."

- Jay W. Brandenberger, University of Notre Dame, Journal of Moral Education