Read how college movies can teach moral values.

Organized youth groups, sports clubs, church organizations promote traditional moral values through peer interaction and learning the social consequences of a particular behavior. Similarly, moral values are promoted through mass media communication such as television, videos, songs, and movies by offering different models of behavior and their corresponding rewards or punishment.

Movies are not simply entertainment as they expose people to social norms and life experiences. They are normally presented with themes and characters displaying value-laden principles and taking moral decisions that are influential in shaping or modifying a person’s value system. Movies displaying immorality such as crimes, violence against women, homosexuality, and others are likely to influence their audience moral values negatively.

Learning Moral Values in College Movies

 Movies are important elements in youth’s socialization and reinforcement of values learned from home and school. For example, study shows that cowboy heroes in movies unintentionally convey socially significant information that influences values, attitudes, and beliefs of young people.

Learning through aesthetics—in which cinema is included—stimulates learner reflection. As
emotions play key roles in learning attitudes and changing behavior, teachers must impact learners
affective domain. Since feelings exist before concepts, the affective path is a critical path to
the rational process of learning.

Cinema is the audiovisual version of storytelling. It enhances
emotions and therefore sets up the foundation for conveying concepts. Movie experiences act
like emotional memories for developing attitudes and keeping them as reflective reference in the
daily activities and events. To foster reflection is the main goal in this cinematic teaching set.
The purpose is not to show the audience how to incorporate a particular attitude, but rather to
promote their reflection and to provide a forum for discussion.

In this paper, the authors relate theirexperiences in cinematic teaching, particularly the effectiveness of the movie-clip methodology,in which multiple movie clips are shown in rapid sequence, along with facilitator comments whilethe clips are shown. The movie clip method can improve faculty teaching and stimulate their professional growth. Teachers seldom think about themselves and usually lack the time to disclosetheir feelings. However, they use their own emotions in teaching, so learning proper methodsto address their affective side is a complementary way to improve their communication withstudents.

Learning Moral Values in College Movies

This methodology offers a special environment for fostering open-hearted discussions,helps teachers improve their self-knowledge, and develop closer relationships with colleagues andstudents through the affective domain. In this paper the authors want to share the methodology anda summary of their experiences in teaching. Although the authors’ field is mostly medical educationthey have also had some cinematic teaching experience with other audiences, and consequentlythey want to share with a extensive community of educators. An Appendix is included at the end,with a collection of movie scenes the authors frequently use in medical education.

Life Lessons in College Movies

There are a number of movies set in college with moral value. In 1994 for example, the movie “With Honors” is about an arrogant Harvard student (played by American-Canadian actor Brendan Frazer) who loses the only copy of his thesis which he later found in the hands of a homeless but street-smart older man.

The conflict began when the homeless man used the thesis as leverage for some favors. The egotistical and antagonistic Harvard senior student tried but failed to outsmart the situational intelligence and shrewd resourcefulness of the street smart and finally agrees to negotiate.

The movie according to some reviews is a thoughtful representation of life with a moral value that people should do what makes them happy. The Harvard student negotiating for his thesis is at first snobbish and insufferable but mature and becomes sympathetic to the pain and suffering of the homeless man.

college moral values

college moral values


Find more interesting information:

How Human Dignity Is Valued in Academic Sphere

Can We Actually “Rewrite” a Film?


Most good college movies explore social and moral issues and teach important life lessons. One of them is the 1998 dark comedy film “Dead Man on Campus”, the story of college studious student (Josh) who is led astray by his roommate’s (Cooper) carefree lifestyle.

Initially, the movie explores the economic reality of getting a college education and consequences of neglecting your studies. For instance, Josh gets into college on a scholarship that requires him to get a passing grade each semester. Cooper’s college education, on the other hand, is funded by his father despite consistent failing grade. Lost in Cooper’s partying world, the normally studious Josh failed to pass all his mid-term exams and facing a loss of scholarship. Similarly, Cooper’s father finally discovers his son’s lack of concern in passing the course and threatens to stop the funding if Cooper fails again.

Facing a similar dilemma, they found a solution in an unusual academic rule where roommate of a student who commits suicide gets a perfect grade but it didn’t work. The problem was resolved when the school gives Josh (who commit a fake suicide attempt over the bridge) a second chance while Cooper, (a hero to his father as he allegedly convinced Josh to abandon his plan) maintained the funding. However, they learned the lessons well as both became more serious in their studies.

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