Developmental & Experimental Indices
Personal Interest Schema Score: represents the portion of items selected that appeal to personal interest considerations (Stages 2 and 3 according to the Kohlberg model). These considerations focus on the direct advantages to the actor, fairness of exchanges, good or evil intentions of the parties, concern for maintaining good relationships, and maintaining approval.
Maintaining Norms: represents the proportion of items selected that appeal to consideration of maintaining societal norms, including the existing legal system, existing roles and formal organizational structure.
P-Score/Postconventional Schema Score: represents the proportion of items selected that appeal to post conventional considerations (Stages 5 and 6 according to the Kohlberg model). These considerations focus on organizing society by appealing to consensus-producing procedures and in terms of intuitively appealing ideals (i.e. abiding by majority vote, insisting on due process, safeguarding minimal basic rights). The P-Score is considered the original overall index of schema consideration, but has been largely replaced with the newer N2 score, an overall index that has outperformed the P-score in terms of construct validity (see next for description of N2).
N2 Score: is a relatively newer overall index, consisting of the combination of two parts: 1) the degree to which post-conventional items are prioritized (almost identical to the P-score) and 2) the degree to which personal interest items receive lower ratings than the ratings given to postconventional items. Using the same data as before (the same stories, items, same subjects’ ratings and rankings), this index generally produces more powerful data trends than the previous overall index (the P-Score). In 27 comparisons (sum of first places), the N2 score was the most powerful index, with the exception of one comparison, in which P and N2 were tied.
Developmental Profile and Phase Indices:
Consolidation/Transition: Some respondents show little evidence of discrimination among two or more schema-typed items, a marker of developmental disequilibrium, or transition, thus resulting in a "transitional" classification of the developmental profile. Other respondents seem to clearly distinguish among the items, showing a clear preference for a particular schema-type, a marker of developmental consolidation, thus resulting in a "consolidated" developmental profile.
Type Indicator: Depending on schema preference and whether the profile is consolidated or transitional, seven different profile types are possible. Types 1, 4 and 7 are consolidated profiles and 2, 3, 5 and 6 are transitional profiles. As development progresses throughout the life span, one may move from consolidated to transitional profiles with corresponding shifts in schema preference.
Utilizer Score: represents the degree of match between items endorsed as most important and the action choice on that story. This index was conceptualized for use as a moderator variable to increase the predictability of moral judgment to behavior.
Number of "Can't Decide" Choices: represents the decisiveness with which a respondent selects action choices on the DIT. For each of the 5 stories on the DIT2 (6 for the DIT), participants are asked whether the protagonist should or should not act in a certain way, as well as a third option, "can't decide". This index is computed according to the number of times the respondent selected the "can't decide" option; indecision is thought to be (at least in part) a product of the ease with which moral information is processed.
Humanitarian/Liberalism: This variable is a proxy for a humanitarian liberal perspective on moral issues. Early in the development of the DIT, researchers noticed that professionals in political science and philosophy obtained the highest P scores. Scores were so high that Rest used this group to
anchor the upper end of the measure. With subsequent studies it became evident that these "experts in the domain" obtained not only obtained high scores on the DIT but were also quite consistent in their action choices. This variable was created to simply count the number of times a respondent's choice matches this high scoring group.
Religious Orthodoxy: This variable represents the sum of the rates and ranks for item 9 in the doctor's dilemma (DIT -1) and a similar story included in the DIT-2. Item 9 evokes the notion that only God can determine whether or not someone should live or die. This variable is computed by adding the rating given to item 9 with the ranking value.
New Checks Total Score: This score helps you see whether the respondents' scores represent moral thinking ( as the moral judgment construct purports) or are bogus data. The new checks procedure recognizes four problems (listed below) in participant reliability-the same four problems identified with the previous "Standard checks" procedure--but uses a newer and less stringent method for calculating whether a response should be purged for lack of reliability. A respondent's scores is purged if the New Checks total score is greater than 200. New Checks is a running total of the following four reliability
checks: 1) The problem of random responding, 2) The problem of missing data, 3) The problem of alien test-taking sets, 4) The problem of non-discrimination.
Meaningless Item Check: Items are included in each story that are lofty sounding, using complex style or verbiage, but are essentially meaningless statements. The purpose of these items is to detect respondents who are trying to fake a high score. Because DIT items are essentially fragments of a larger moral argument, respondents who don't understand the argument can't distinguish it from items that have complex verbiage but are essentially meaningless.
Antisocial Score: This score represents considerations that reflect an anti-establishment attitude. These considerations presuppose an understanding of Stage 4, but fault existing authorities and "the establishment" for being hypocritical and inconsistent with its own rationale (and is therefore sometimes referred to as Stage 4 '/2). For researchers who wish to give personalized feedback on a respondent's DIT profile, it may be helpful to discuss the
respondent's tendency to select such items.
For references and more information on the indices, please see pages 18-26 of the DIT2 Guide