The influence of age, sex, and theism on ethical judgments


The authors develop a model of ethical orientation based on responses to a series of ethically questionable vignettes using factor analysis and a categorical regression procedure. The factors used to explain variance in responses are theism orientation, age, sex, and intrinsic and extrinsic religious motivation orientation. The results confirm earlier research in that age and sex are not significant in and of themselves. An important finding is that theistic orientation is significant and also displays a strong relation to extrinsic orientation. Interaction effects between sex and theism are also discovered and explained. The results are illuminating in highlighting the importance to ethical orientation not of religious orientation per se but of the extrinsic orientation and its interaction with sex. The paper, thus, illuminates more deeply the sex-ethics connection. Last, while not particularly significant, there is also an identified age effect on ethical orientation which confirms moral development theory.

Document Type





business ethics, religion, sex, age, morals

Publication Date


Journal Title

Journal of Management, Spirituality and Religion