Arthur, James and Harding, Robert and Godfrey, Ray (2009) Citizens of Character - The Values and Character Dispositions of 14-16 Year Olds in the Hodge Hill Constituency. Project Report. University of Birmingham, Birmingham.
URL of Published Version: http://www.learningforlife.org.uk/research-projects/learning-for-life-research-reports/view/?id=20
Citizens of Character explores the attitudes, dispositions, and values of 14-16 year old students in a particular urban environment - the six schools of the Hodge Hill constituency in Birmingham - and the extent to which the education system and the local environment advance or inhibit their sense of self, their values and their character development. These students constituted a heterogeneous group of religious and non-religious individuals.
This project goes beyond the normal exploration and measurement of strengths of character in individuals and looks at the factors that build character in families and schools. This research has wider implications for the relationship between character and aspirations, social change, school cultures, citizenship, identity and religion. The study discusses what students understand by character. It set out to ascertain the moral values held by a group of students living in an inner-city area. The study sought to question who or what has influenced their moral values and examined which individuals, institutions and situations might have hindered or promoted their development. Some of the issues and concerns which arose - for example, relations with neighbours, the matter of local and national pride and questions of trust - may seem not to impinge upon character education as such but are relevant in a wider context.
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