Ethical Thinking Skills of Mathematically Gifted Finnish Young Adults

Kirsi Tirri and Petri Nokelainen
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American Education Research Association

This study investigated ethical thinking skills of mathematically highly gifted Finnish young adults (n=13) and their relation to general intelligence (FSIQ, WAIS-III) and moral reasoning (P index, DIT). Results showed that mathematically gifted young adults who had highest FSIQ scores reported higher ability to tolerate different ethical views, take other person's position when facing a conflict situation and recognise new, right at the moment important ethical problems than their lower achieving peers. Further, individual differences in general intelligence did not differentiate one’s ability to express different feelings to other people, take care of the other peoples' well being, control own prejudices when making ethical evaluations and create alternative ways to act when facing ethical problems in everyday life. Results further showed that mathematically gifted young adults who scored highest and lowest in DIT were more neglective about their interpersonal relationships than those with mid scale DIT scores. Further, highest order ethical sensitivity was positively related to moral reasoning.