Religion has been connected to higher education throughout its history in the
United States and recent research suggests that the development of spirituality, as a part
of the pursuit of higher education, is important to today’s college student. In an effort to
understand twenty-first century college students’ perspectives on spirituality in relation to
their education, this study examines the relationship between student pre-college
characteristics and the spiritual engagement of students entering institutions affiliated
with the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.
Data for this study were drawn from the Cooperative Institutional Research
Program’s Freshman Survey and the College Students’ Beliefs and Values survey
administered to 112,232 entering freshman at 236 colleges and universities across the
United States during the fall semester of 2004. The subjects examined in this study were
the 9,838 students who enrolled at colleges and universities affiliated with the Council for
Christian Colleges and Universities and who participated in both portions of the 2004
Findings of this research suggest that students’ gender, race or ethnicity, high-school academic achievement, high-school type, and religious identification are
informative in understanding their spiritual engagement as they enter colleges and
universities affiliated with the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. These
findings may be useful to researchers and practitioners as they design ways to encourage
students in their unique journeys toward spiritual maturity during their college years.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. June 2013. Major: Educational Policy and Administration. Advisor: Melissa S. Anderson. 1 computer file (PDF); xii, 242 pages, appendices A-D.
Fereira, James A..
The spiritual engagement of students entering institutions that belong to the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.
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