character strengths

15 February 2023

This paper presents a systematic review of scientific articles on friendship and character education (CE) published between 2007 and 2021. It seeks to identify the dominant theo- ries from which CE is approached, how friend- ship is understood in the studies, and what specific relationship is built between friend- ship and character; in other words, the extent to which it is posited that friendship can be harnessed to acquire virtues. Results indicate a prevalence of a psychological approach to CE, linked to an instrumentalist perspective on friendship, which associates it with certain benefits. However, this approach is closely followed by a philosophical–moral view that understands friendship as a good in itself and, consequently, highlights its humanizing potential. The Aristotelian framework for un- derstanding friendship and character stands out within this approach. The relationship be- tween friendship and character in the selected articles is explored through 5 categories that emerged in the analysis: 1) friendship for char- acter; 2) character for friendship; 3) friendship and transgressions; 4) teachers’ and students’ perceptions of the influence of friendship; and 5) analysis of programmes that include friendship in the curriculum.


Please, cite this article as follows: Espinosa Zárate, Z., Ahedo Ruiz, J., & Rumayor, M. (2023). Amistad y educación del carácter: una revisión sistemática | Friendship and character education: A systematic review. Revista Española de Pedagogía, 81 (284), 143-169. https://doi.org/10.22550/REP81-1-2023-08