In 2011 the Journal of Moral Education (JME) celebrated its 40th anniversary of publication. It seemed appropriate to examine and reflect on the JME's achievements by reviewing its evolution and contribution to the emerging field of moral education and development. Moral education trends, as reflected in the 945 articles published in JME from 1971 to 2011, were investigated by content analysis. The research objectives were: to discover the trends in moral education as represented by published articles and special issues (by analysis of disciplinary approaches, key topics, research methodologies and age-related educational levels) and to examine the international and gender-related development of the journal and the influence of its contributors (by analysis of first authors and editorial board members). The findings identify important concerns, key research topics and neglected areas in moral education and development. Analysis offers an insight into the contribution of JME as the main international interdisciplinary journal in this field, to the history of moral education, to theory and practice and in the changing socio-cultural contexts of the past 40 years. Discussion of the findings is offered, limitations are acknowledged and implications for future directions for the journal considered.
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