Turning to Crime> Cognition> Moral Development

Mind map on Palmer and Hollin's 1998 study. 

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  • Turning to Crime> Cognition> Moral Development, Palmer and Hollin
    • Aim- To Investigate whether the development of moral reasoning in relation to offending behaviour is delayed in male delinquents.
    • Sample
      • Comparison group- 332 non-offenders (210f, 122m, 13-22) from a W. Midlands schools and Uni.
      • Sample- 126 convicted offenders (m, aged 13-21) from Young Offender Institution  and Magistrates' Court.The main offences were burglary and car theft.
    • Method- Confidential questionnaire (Socio-economic status, SRD and SRM-SF).
      • SRM-SF (Socio-moral Reasoning Measure-Short Form) is an 11 item questionnaire on moral topics including truth, life, contract and justice. the outcome of this is a SRM morality score from 100-400; scores of 100-125= Pre-conventional morality, Kohlberg's Lv1.
      • SRD (Self-Reported Delinquency checklist) made sure there was different level of delinquency between the 2 groups via self-reported behaviour.
      • Quasi experiment. IV= Offender or not     DV= Moral development score,
    • Results
      • SRD confirmed offenders had committed more than non-offenders.
      • Male offenders had the least mature moral reasoning (Predominantly Lv1).
      • Non-offenders were using conventional reasoning.
    • Conclusion- Young male delinquents have deficits in moral reasoning especially in value areas relating to delinquent behaviour.


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