SAFER Training Programme (English)

Character Education Theoretical Background – Defining Character Education

At times, different definitions of Character Education have been proposed. For example, the theory that character education is the strategic instruction that promotes social and personal responsibility and the development of the good character traits and moral virtues that make this possible (Vessels & Boyd, 1996). Others (Fertman & van Linden, 1999), have proposed that it is the formal instruction in honesty, trust, cooperation, respect, responsibility, hope, determination, and loyalty. Tomaselli and Golden (1996) defined it as everything the school does to help students make better, more effective choices and decisions; the students must identify, understand, and learn how to act on their own values.

In general, “Character Education” is a term used to describe an educational approach which aims to help children to develop moral, civic and socially acceptable thinking and behavior. Using all the dimensions of school life, Character Education is taught to children with optimal aim to foster character development (Battistich, Schaps, & Wilson, 2004). Subsequently Character Education is linked to various educational programs, which are targeting to promote and enhance children’s healthy development and overall well-being, such as social and emotional learning, life skills education and health education (Tatman, Edmonson, & State, 2012).