Comparison of Academically Average and Gifted Students' Self-Rated Ethical Sensitivity

Kirsi Tirri

This study examined the ethical sensitivity self-evaluations of 7th - 9th grade students in two Finnish urban schools using the Ethical Sensitivity Scale Questionnaire (ESSQ) and asked: (1) Are the psychometric properties of ESSQ scientifically valid? Are there any differences in the ethical sensitivity between (2) female and male, and (3) academically average and gifted students? Results showed that female students estimated their ethical skills higher than their male peers and that academically gifted students estimated their ethical skills higher than average ability students. This finding supported other researchers' notions that gifted students hold a privileged position in the maturation of moral thinking due to their precocious intellectual growth.

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