WWC review of this study

Integrating a structured ethical reflection curriculum into high school community service experiences: Impact on students' socio-moral development.

Leming, J. S. (2001). Adolescence, 36 (141), 33-45. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ632110

  • Quasi-Experimental Design
     examining 
    282
     Students
    , grade
    12
Does not meet WWC standards

Reviewed: September 2016

Study sample characteristics were not reported.
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards with reservations

Reviewed: April 2007

Knowledge, attitudes, & values outcomes—Statistically significant positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
index

Ethical perspective

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
282 students

1.84

1.31

Yes

 
 
30
More Outcomes

Ethical awareness

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
282 students

2.25

1.85

Yes

 
 
21

Social responsibility: School

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
282 students

10.89

9.7

Yes

 
 
16

Ethical responsibility

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
282 students

2.22

1.97

Yes

 
 
13

Anticipated community participation

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
278 students

16.19

15.52

No

--

Social responsibility: General

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
282 students

26.52

26.16

No

--

Self-esteem

Building Decision Skills vs. None

Posttest

Grade 12;
278 students

35.03

34.57

No

--

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • Female: 75%
    Male: 25%

  • Suburban
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    Missouri

Setting

A suburban high school in St. Louis, Missouri.

Study sample

The study involved 283 twelfth-grade students in one high school. The school district was described as serving middle-class communities with a mainly white population. Students were described as college preparatory, and the sample was 75% female and 25% male.

Intervention Group

The intervention group participated in a community service elective course that implemented the Building Decision Skills curriculum. Class instruction had the students working in large and small groups with homework assigned after each of 10 lessons. The lessons were taught during the first two weeks of the semester. The community service component, integrated with the Building Decision Skills curriculum, involved two days a week off-campus and two days on-campus participating in school and community service activities, such as providing companionship to residents of a retirement home or running a recycling center on campus.

Comparison Group

The comparison group was drawn from senior English literature classes at the same high school as the intervention group. Comparison group students did not participate in Building Decision Skills or the community service course.

Outcome descriptions

Students responded to a study-specific questionnaire that included three ethical dilemmas for which their responses were scored on ethical awareness, ethical responsibility, and ethical perspective. Additional measures were used to assess students’ self-esteem in social settings (Janis-Field Feelings of Inadequacy Scale), their sense of social responsibility in school and in society, and their anticipation of future community participation (Newmann and Rutter’s Moral-Political Awareness Scale). (See Appendix A2 for more detailed descriptions of the outcome measures.)

Support for implementation

No information on teacher training was provided.

 

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