Value Preferences, Political Orientation and Moral Reasoning of Certified Public Accountants

35 Pages Posted: 4 Jan 2008

See all articles by Donald Lamar Ariail

Donald Lamar Ariail

Kennesaw State University

Nicholas Emler

University of Surrey - Department of Psychology

Mohammad J. Abdolmohammadi

Bentley University - Department of Accountancy

Date Written: January 3, 2008

Abstract

Numerous studies have reported a significant negative relation between moral reasoning (as measured by the Defining Issues Test) and political conservatism. However, recent studies with accounting subjects (Bailey et al. 2004, Bernardi et al. 2004) and other subjects (Bailey 2007) have found little or no relation and have called for more research. We use a sample of 309 practicing Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) to investigate this issue further and also present a variable composed of four value preferences that may explain the mixed results of prior studies. Our findings indicate a statistically significant inverse relation between moral reasoning and conservatism in univariate tests. However, this relation disappears in multivariate tests, where a composite measure of four individual value preferences (broadminded, imaginative, salvation, and obedient) from the Rokeach Value Survey is highly significant in explaining variation in moral reasoning. Our findings add to those suggesting caution in the interpretation of scores from the Defining Issues Test.

Keywords: moral reasoning, political orientation, value preferences, Rokeach values

JEL Classification: C91, M41, M49

Suggested Citation

Ariail, Donald Lamar and Emler, Nicholas and Abdolmohammadi, Mohammad J., Value Preferences, Political Orientation and Moral Reasoning of Certified Public Accountants (January 3, 2008). (CAAA) 2008 Annual Conference Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1080343 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1080343

Donald Lamar Ariail

Kennesaw State University ( email )

United States
678-915-7387 (Phone)
678-915-4967 (Fax)

Nicholas Emler

University of Surrey - Department of Psychology ( email )

United States

Mohammad J. Abdolmohammadi (Contact Author)

Bentley University - Department of Accountancy ( email )

175 Forest Street
279 Adamian Academic Center
Waltham, MA 02452
United States
781-891-2976 (Phone)

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