Almerinda Forte

The Moral Reasoning of Sports Management Students in the United States and Italy

Almerinda Forte, College of Professional Studies, Division of Administration and Economics

Abstract
The researcher analyzed the moral reasoning ability of Sports Management students in the United States and Italy.  The researcher statistically analyzed data collected through a survey questionnaire designed to measure moral reasoning. 

The Defining Issues Test (DIT) developed by James Rest using Kohlberg’s six stages of moral judgment was used in this study.  The short form of the DIT was used.  This form contains three ethical scenarios each accompanied by a set of questions.  A statistical analysis package is used to interpret the data, with significance established at the .05 level.  The U.S. students also received a demographic questionnaire. The Italian professor failed to distribute the demographic questionnaire to the students.

The researcher in this study investigated the relationship between Italian Sports Management students’ moral reasoning and United States Sports Management students’ moral reasoning. The study also examined the relationship between gender and moral reasoning of Sports Management students in the United States. The principled moral reasoning (P-scores) of United States Sports Management lower and upper classmen was also examined. The researcher investigated the relationship between the United States Sports Management students’ P- scores and their religious affiliations, specifically Catholicism versus other affiliations.

A sample of 41 undergraduate Sports Management students from a private Catholic university in New York City and 31 undergraduate Sports Management students from the University of Rome’s Sports Management Program was utilized in this study.

The mean “P”- score (principled moral reasoning) was 22.3 for the United States Sports Management students with a standard deviation of 12.4. The mean “P”- score was 26.4 for the Italian Sports Management students with a standard deviation of 12.5. No statistically significant difference was found between Italian and American Sports Management students at the 0.05 level. The American female respondents reported higher mean “P”- scores of 23.5 with a standard deviation of 10.2, than the American male respondents, who had a mean “P”- score of 21.7 and a standard deviation of 13.6. The American female Sports Management students had mean P-scores which were slightly higher than males but not significantly so. No statistically significant differences were found between the moral reasoning of American lower classmen and upper classmen in this study. No statistically significant differences were found between the moral reasoning of Catholic and non-Catholic Sports Management students.