About This Chapter
Introduction to the Study of Morality - Chapter Summary
This comprehensive chapter outlines fundamental concepts related to the study of morality. Our expert instructors help you define basic morality terms, and you'll take a look at various approaches to the study of morality. Use any computer or mobile device to access these resources, and take the accompanying mini quizzes to reinforce the knowledge you gain. If you have any questions about morality, you can reach out to our instructors online. By the end of the chapter, you should be equipped to:
- Explain the purpose of philosophy
- Define values, morals and ethics
- Identify the characteristics, origins and aspects of morality
- Discuss fundamental morality principles
- Compare different approaches for studying morality
- Explain ethical theories related to natural laws and rights
- Summarize Gilligan's theory of moral development and Kohlberg's stages of moral development
1. Philosophy: Definition & Purpose
In this lesson, explore one definition of philosophy and why it is hard to pin down in simple terms. Learn what it means to go beyond having a philosophy to 'doing philosophy.'
2. What is Morality? - Definition & Characteristics
What is right and what is wrong? Explore the fine lines that make up morality and discover what this means to different people. Then, test your understanding with a brief quiz.
3. What Are Values, Morals & Ethics?
In this lesson, learn the differences between ethics and morals. Consider how these terms can mean different things to philosophers compared with the general public and how values factor into the conversation.
4. The Basic Principles of Morality
This lesson discusses the basic tenets of morality and highlights the six principles of the Moral Foundations Theory and how they are universally accepted.
5. Origin, Aspects & Reasons Behind Morality
What are morals? Where do morals come from? Why do we need morals? These questions have been debated throughout human history. In this lesson, explore some possible answers, and test your understanding with a brief quiz.
6. Approaches to the Study of Morality
Morality is an immense topic, so how do we begin to study it? In this lesson, explore four standard approaches to the study of morality, and test your understanding with a brief quiz.
7. Theories of Ethics: Rights & Natural Laws
Legal rights are those rights provided to citizens through the Constitution and other articles of the US legal system. Natural rights are rooted in the ethical, based on what is right or wrong. Learn more about ethics in this lesson.
8. Carol Gilligan's Theory of Moral Development
How does one choose between right and wrong? Are there differences in moral development based on gender? Psychologist Carol Gilligan proposed a theory that highlights the differences between male and female moral development.
9. Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development
How do people learn to make morally sound decisions? To illustrate Kohlberg's levels of moral development, we'll follow Lauren as she makes difficult decisions.
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Other chapters within the Philosophy 102: Ethics in America course
- Moral Belief Systems Overview
- Ancient Greek Views on Ethics & Philosophy
- Morality in Western Religion
- Natural & Moral Law Theories
- Consequentialist vs. Non-Consequentialist Philosophies
- Ethical Issues in Life & Death
- Economic Inequality & Morality
- Philosophical Theories Behind the Justice System
- Moral & Ethical Issues in Peacetime vs. War
- Human Rights Ethics & Morals
- Ethical Issues in Relationships & Sexuality
- Bioethics Impact on Medicine & Morality
- Ethics & Morality in Business
- The Environment & Ethics