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Title: Character Education Topic Report
Description: Character education is a fairly new and rapidly evolving topic for curriculum interventions. It is also broad, often overlapping with other program areas.

Character can encompass such moral and ethical values as respect, fairness, and caring--as well as responsibility, trustworthiness, and citizenship. And it can refer to the demonstration of these values in behavior, reasoning, and emotions.

Some character education programs integrate activities in social studies, English, and math. Some create communities of students, teachers, and parents to foster respect and caring. And some use in-class stories, games, songs, and activity books to encourage the acceptance of other cultures.

To set some bounds on this evolving topic, the WWC identified programs that deliberately attempt to develop students' character by teaching core values and that had most if not all of their lesson plans or prescribed activities directly related to instilling those values. Most programs did not enter our review because of this criterion. For programs that did, most had only one or two small studies that met our evidence standards. For these studies, student outcomes were measured in three domains: behavior, academic achievement, and knowledge, attitudes, and values.
Online Availability:
Cover Date: June 2007
Web Release: June 4, 2007
Publication #: WWC TRCE07
Center/Program: WWC
Associated Centers: NCEE
Type of Product: Intervention Report
Questions: For questions about the content of this Intervention Report, please contact:
Betsy Wolf.