THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN AGE, SEX AND THE LANGUAGE OF SOCIAL REGULATION (MORAL DEVELOPMENT, SOCIAL COGNITION, LEARNING)

EMILY COMSTOCK DIMARTINO, Fordham University

Abstract

This study investigated the relationship among age, sex and the ability to differentiate social regulatory transactions. Issues addressed were: the degree to which boys, girls, men and women were able to distinguish among moral, conventional, prudential-intelligence and school rules; the similarities and differences between the patterns of social rule discrimination of children and adults; the ways in which males and females differentiated social regulatory transactions.^ Fifteen boys and 15 girls, 7.5 to 8.5 years of age, and 15 male and 15 female adults completed four Q-sorts, each of which represented a different type of social regulatory episode. Six subjects from each subsample partook in an interview which investigated qualitatively the kinds of language subjects used to express social rule understandings.^ All pairwise Pearson correlation coefficients were significant at the .01 level thus indicating a strong relationship in the patterns of social regulatory understanding between boys, girls, men, and women. The results of the 2 x 2 x 4 x 4 ANOVA with two repeated factors demonstrated that children evaluated the moral and the prudential stories more appropriately than did the adults. Adults were more appropriate in their appraisal of the school rule episode. Neither group significantly differentiated between moral and conventional adjectives types of the story concerning social convention.^ The only story episode in which a significant difference at the .01 level occurred for sex was on the story representing a moral issue. Females significantly differentiated the moral type adjectives from the conventional ones whereas the males did not.^ The language function analysis of the interview protocols revealed trends for sex rather than age. The greater use of projecting language was by females. This group also was more likely to use if, then statements based on logic than were the males. The males, young and old, did employ more language which speculated about events including drawing logical conclusions. ^

Subject Area

Early childhood education

Recommended Citation

DIMARTINO, EMILY COMSTOCK, "THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN AGE, SEX AND THE LANGUAGE OF SOCIAL REGULATION (MORAL DEVELOPMENT, SOCIAL COGNITION, LEARNING)" (1985). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8508112.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8508112

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