Re-examining Kohlberg's conception of morality in schizophrenia

Jonathan McGuire*, Linda Barbanel, Martin Brüne, Robyn Langdon

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    Introduction. Early clinical descriptions of and research with people with schizophrenia described apparent difficulties in moral judgement and sensitivity. However, this research failed to take into account the effect of cognitive deficits and symptoms on task performance.Methods. We assessed people with schizophrenia on the Moral Judgement Interview, a task used in the earlier literature, alongside a battery of neuro- and social-cognitive tasks.Results. Whereas people with schizophrenia perform more poorly on this task than controls, this is mediated by memory and declarative theory of mind, and also impacted by negative symptoms.Conclusions. These results indicate that performance deficits on moral judgement tasks are not a universal feature of schizophrenia, but rather due to associated difficulties such as those in social cognition.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)377-381
    Number of pages5
    JournalCognitive Neuropsychiatry
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 3 Sep 2015

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