First Advisor

Mitch Klett


The purpose of this project was to characterize and explore many different properties of conflict resolution and moral development as possible using qualitative empirical approaches which explored children’s’ concepts of problem solving and reasoning. The objective of the study was to address how children cheat in games, and the efficacy of Rock-Paper-Scissors in conflict resolution. This study built upon Jean Piaget’s theory of moral development in children, extending his concepts into the sphere of rules and transgressions. The study was designed to analyze the stages in Piaget’s theory pertaining to the levels of moral development and how children interact in successful conflict resolutions with regard to the stages of development. The study also incorporates an analysis of the game Rochambeau, or Rock-paper-Scissors, which is often used to solve small disputes between people. The research technique, naturalistic observation, was based on observing subjects in their natural environment. This type of research is well suited for situations where conducting lab research is unrealistic, cost prohibitive, or would unduly affect the subject's behavior. The experiment was carried out during a daytime program provided by Child and Family Services of the Upper Peninsula, Inc., in the summer of 2014.