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Preetha obeys her parents and teachers due to fear of punishments. According to Kohlberg’s theory, she belongs to:
1. Pre conventional morality
2. Conventional morality
3. Post conventional morality
4. Autonomous morality

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Correct Answer - Option 1 : Pre conventional morality

Lawrence Kohlberg, an American psychologist, has propounded the 'Theory of Moral Development.

  • He has made a systematic study of moral development in his theory that is categorized into 3 levels and 6 stages. 
  • He created moral development theory by posing moral dilemmas to groups of children as well as adolescents and adults.
  • According to Kohlberg moral dilemma is the thinking process involved in judgments about questions of right & wrong. 

  • Preconventional morality is the first stage of moral development and lasts until approximately age 9.
  • At the pre-conventional level children don’t have a personal code of morality, and instead moral decisions are shaped by the standards of adults and the consequences of following or breaking their rules.
  • For example, if an action leads to punishment, then the action is considered o be bad, and if it leads to a reward, it is considered to be good.
  • Authority is outside the individual and children often make moral decisions based on the physical consequences of actions.
  • Children often make moral decisions based on how it will impact them. When they make good decisions or don't make bad decisions, it is less about principles or values and more about some sort of reinforcement they receive.

  • Conventional morality is characterized by an acceptance of society's conventions concerning right and wrong. At this level, an individual obeys rules and follows society's norms even when there are no consequences for obedience or disobedience.
  • Postconventional morality identifies the ethical reasoning of moral actors who make decisions based on rights, values, duties, or principles that are (or could be) universalizable.
  • The stage of autonomous morality is also known as moral relativism – morality based on your own rules. Children recognize there is no absolute right or wrong and that morality depends on intentions, not consequences.

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