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NCJ Number: 169951 Find in a Library
Title: Criminal Justice and Ethical Ideology: An Exploration of a Loyalty-Truthfulness Dilemma
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:25  Issue:6  Dated:(November/December 1997)  Pages:527-540
Author(s): B Byers; W G Powers
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 14
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using a vignette design, this research examined the impact of gender, college major (criminal justice versus others), and ethical orientation on perceptions of an actor confronted with an ethical dilemma of loyalty versus disloyalty that involved deception.
Abstract: A research packet was distributed to 1,305 volunteer subjects within the same week from a required criminal justice class (n=154) and a required basic speech class (n=1,151) at a major, comprehensive midwestern public university. In order to differentiate loyalty and truthfulness and to measure the potential impact of gender, major classification, and three social psychological dependant variables, two versions of a vignette were constructed. One scenario contained the following key elements: a hypothetical actor chooses to avoid personal negatives, tells the truth about an event, and as a result the actor is disloyal to an important peer group, such that the actor will not receive long-term rewards from the group. The second scenario describes a contrasting situation: a hypothetical actor chooses to accept personal negatives, tells a lie to an authority figure about an event, and as a result the actor remained loyal to an important peer group; the actor will receive long-term rewards from the group. Female subjects tended to judge the act of lying and maintaining loyalty more positively than being truthful but disloyal, and they maintained consistent perceptions of the actor with more positive perceptions of both social and task attraction. Males, in contrast, judged the act of being truthful but disloyal as more positive than lying and maintaining loyalty. There were no significant differences between major classifications. Although this research shows the differential impact of ethical ideology upon judgments of specific actions and upon interpersonal attributions developed toward the actor, future research should examine each factor in detail. 3 tables, 62 references, and appended Ethics Position Questionnaire and the study scenario
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Criminal justice education; Criminal justice ideologies; Criminal justice system personnel; Professional conduct and ethics; Professional misconduct
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