The proposed one-year planning grant is to support the early stage development of the Achieving with Integrity (AwI) project, which aims to apply the principles of “reconstructive” character education (Menezes & Campos, 2000) to promote students’ moral awareness, judgment, commitment and action related to academic integrity. The purpose of this proposal is to secure the time and resources needed to develop three foundational components of the AwI project: its participant pool, training materials, and instrumentation. The proposed project offers both strategic opportunity and promise in several ways for those concerned about the problem of academic dishonesty as well as those interested in character education more broadly. It does so in at least three, interrelated ways; by 1) offering a much-needed expansion of research and intervention related to the epidemic of cheating, 2) doing so from a positive youth development (PYD) perspective (seeing the epidemic of cheating as an opportunity for character education) and by 3) adapting the Four Component Model of moral functioning (FCM) (Rest, Narvaez, Bebeau, & Thoma, 1999) for curricular use in ways that are of both theoretical and practical importance. The primary activities of this project include 1) recruitment of teachers, 2) the development and delivery of teacher training materials and student curricula, and 3) development of instruments to assess project-related changes. The project outputs would include 1) a database of 24 secondary teachers 2) an effective teacher professional development program and 3) a set of valid and reliable measures to assess it. Project outcomes include changes in teacher participants’ understanding and use of the AwI program at promoting students moral development in the classroom. The enduring impacts of the AwI project include the widespread adoption of these curricula by thousands of teachers and the moral development of tens of thousands of students they teach.
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