Integrative character education (ICE): grounding facilitated prosocial development in a humanistic perspective for a multicultural world

Robert White (Corresponding Author), Tae Seob Shin

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Character Education initiatives within schools have gained both proponents and opponents over recent years and continue to garner mixed reviews. Proponents argue that the need is urgent and the increasing level of school disruption, antisocial behavior and violence requires a focus on values/virtues/moral education and claim this is synonymous with good practice in education. Opponents ask, whose values will be taught and how does this address the needs of our multicultural reality? While others claim that, many initiatives embrace moral education delivered in a behaviorist fashion promoting control by other and lack a humanistic understanding of the pluralistic nature of modern society. This review addresses these issues by exploring, critically interpreting, and synthesizing educational and psychological research. The aim being to develop a definition of character education that is not confined to antiquated understandings of ethnocentric non-negotiable ideological values/virtues/morals. The main focus of the review being to inform a unified theory of character education embedded in a sociocultural understanding of personality development that can inform practice in multicultural settings. By developing a research informed discussion of characteristics beneficial to life outcomes a theory of integrative character education is offered.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-74
Number of pages31
JournalMulticultural Education Review
Issue number1
Early online date13 Feb 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2017



  • Character Education
  • Anti-social Behavior
  • Pro-social Development
  • Personality
  • Five Factor Model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Psychology(all)

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