Does Education Influence Ethical Decisions? An International Study
- 347 Downloads
This study examined whether having attended a public, private or religious affiliated grade and/or high school influenced a college student’s ethical decision making process. We also examined whether having taken an ethics course in college influences a student’s ethical decision making process. Our sample included 508 accounting students (237 men and 271 women) from Albania, Ecuador, Ireland and the United States. Our analyses indicated no differences in ethical decision making that associated with either grade-or-high-school education. While our data showed no difference in the reported attitudes between students from Ecuador and the United States after controlling for social desirability response bias, we found significant differences between the attitudes students from the United States and students from both Albania and Ireland. While gender was also significant for six of our seven scenarios, social desirability response bias was significant in all of our scenarios.
KeywordsPrimary and secondary education Ethics course
- Arnold, D. F., Sr., & Ponemon, L. A. (1991). Internal auditors’ perceptions of whistle-blowing and the influence of moral reasoning: an experiment. Auditing: A Journal of Practice & Theory, 10(1), 1–15.Google Scholar
- Bernardi, R. A. (1994). Fraud detection: the effect of client integrity and competence and auditor cognitive style. Auditing: A Journal of Practice & Theory, 13(Supplement), 68–84.Google Scholar
- Callahan, D. (1980). Goals in the teaching of ethics. In D. Callahan & S. Bok (Eds.), Ethics teaching in higher education (pp. 61–80). New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
- Devonish, D., Alleyne, P. A., Cadogan-McClean, C., & Greenidge, D. (2011). An empirical study of future professionals’ intentions to engage in unethical business practices. Journal of Academic Ethics, 7, 231–248.Google Scholar
- Gallup Polls. (2007). Gallop religiosity index scores and suicide rates in 67 countries around the world, http://www.gallup.com/poll/108625/more-religious-countries-lower-suicide-rates.aspx, Accessed: March 21, 2011.
- Geiger, M. A., & O’Connell, B. T. (2000). An examination of using surrogate measures to assess social desirability response bias. Research on Accounting Ethics, 6, 107–120.Google Scholar
- Gendall, P., Hoek, J., & Blakeley, M. (1992). Estimating a socially undesirable behaviour. Marketing Bulletin, 3, 1–8.Google Scholar
- Gilligan, C. (1982). In a different voice: psychological theory and women’s development. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (1980). Culture’s consequences: Comparing values, behaviors, institutions, and organizations across nations. Beverly Hills: Sage.Google Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (1984). Culture dimensions in management and planning. Asia Pacific Journal of Management, (January), 81–99.Google Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (1991). Cultures and organizations: Software of the mind. New York: McGraw Hill.Google Scholar
- Hofstede, G. (2010). Geert Hofstede TM Cultural Dimensions, http://www.geert.hofstede.com/, Accessed: November 10, 2010.
- Hood, R. W., Spilka, W. B., Hunsberger, B., & Gorsuch, R. (1996). The psychology of religion: An empirical approach. New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
- Institute, S. A. S. (2009). JMP: The statistical discovery software. Cary: SAS Institute Inc.Google Scholar
- Nguyen, N. T., Basury, M. T., Smith, W. P., Kopka, D., & McCulloh, D. (2008). Moral issues and gender differences in ethical judgment using Reidenbach and Robin’s (1990) multidimensional ethics scale: implication in teaching of business ethics. Journal of Business Ethics, 77(4), 417–430.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Paulhus, D. L. (1986). Self-deception and impression management in test responses. In A. Angleiter & J. S. Wiggins (Eds.), Personality assessment via questionnaire: Current issues in theory and measurement. Berlin: Springer.Google Scholar
- Ponemon, L. A., & Gabhart, D. R. L. (1993). Ethical reasoning in accounting and auditing. Research Monograph Number 21. Vancouver: CGA-Canada Research Foundation.Google Scholar
- Rest, J. R. (1979). Defining issues test. Minneapolis: University of Minneapolis Press.Google Scholar
- Rest, J. R. (1986). Moral development: Advances in research and theory. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
- Rest, J. R. (1993). Guide for the defining issues test. Minneapolis: Center for the Study of Ethical Development.Google Scholar
- Smith, A. (2002). Testing the stability of the global concept of culture in an accounting context. Accounting Enquiries, 11(2), 227–248.Google Scholar
- Transparency International. (2008). Corruption perceptions index. http://www.transparency.Org/news_room/in_focus/2008/cpi2008/cpi_2008_table, Accessed: November 10, 2008.
- Vitell, S. J., & Paolillo, J. G. P. (2003). Consumer ethics: the role of religiosity. Journal of Business, 46(2), 151–162.Google Scholar
- Weaver, G. R., & Agle, B. R. (2002). Religiosity and ethical behavior in organizations: a symbolic interactionist perspective. Academy of Management Review, 27(1), 77–97.Google Scholar