Critical Thinking on Values

Values, Beliefs and Attitudes
Where do values come from?
Our values come from a variety of sources. Some of these include:
• family
• peers (social influences)
• the workplace (work ethics, job roles)
• educational institutions such as schools or TAFE
• significant life events (death, divorce, losing jobs, major accident and trauma, major health issues, significant financial losses and so on)
• religion
• music
• media
• technology
• culture
• major historical events (world wars, economic depressions, etc).
Dominant values
Dominant values are those that are widely shared amongst a group, community or culture. They are passed on through sources such as the media, institutions, religious organisations or family, but remember what is considered dominant in one culture or society will vary to the next.
Using the sources listed above, some of your values could be:
• Family—caring for each other, family comes first
• Peers—importance of friendship, importance of doing things that peers approve of
• Workplace—doing your job properly; approving/disapproving of ‘foreign orders’ (doing home-related activities in work time or using work resources for home related activities)
• Educational institutions—the valuing or otherwise of learning; value of self in relation to an ability to learn (this often depends on personal experience of schooling, whether positive or negative)
• Significant life events—death of loved ones and the impact on what we value as being important; marriage and the importance and role of marriage and children; separation and divorce and the value change that may be associated with this (valuing of self or otherwise)
• Religion—beliefs about ‘right and wrong’ and beliefs in gods
• Media—the impact of TV, movies, radio, the Internet and advertising on what is important in our lives, what is valued and not valued
• Music—music often reflects what is occurring in society, people’s response to things such as love and relationships which...