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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Best Practices for School-Based Moral Education

Peter Meindl, Abigail Quirk, Jesse Graham
Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences 
First Published December 21, 2017


How can schools help students build moral character? One way is to use prepackaged moral education programs, but as we report here, their effectiveness tends to be limited. What, then, can schools do? We took two steps to answer this question. First, we consulted more than 50 of the world’s leading social scientists. These scholars have spent decades studying morality, character, or behavior change but until now few had used their expertise to inform moral education practices. Second, we searched recent studies for promising behavior change techniques that apply to school-based moral education. These two lines of investigation congealed into two recommendations: Schools should place more emphasis on hidden or “stealthy” moral education practices and on a small set of “master” virtues. Throughout the article, we describe practices flowing from these recommendations that could improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of school-based moral education.

The article is here.