chapter  1
21 Pages


Professionals provide vital services to society. Teachers educate citizens, clergy minister to the spirit of individuals and communities, doctors and nurses promote health, engineers design structures and systems that enable modern society to function, lawyers protect the rights of citizens, government officials provide public services, and so forth. The moral codes of most professions focus on service, individual rights, and social responsibility, while the content of professional education focuses on technical knowledge and skills. The social responsibility of professional practice is often overlooked in professional education courses. Before considering strategies for integrating moral reasoning and civic responsibility into professional education and interventions, it is important to ponder two questions:

• Why focus on moral reasoning within professional practice? • Do well-known conceptions of moral consciousness provide an adequate basis for

addressing critical social problems in practice?