The purpose of this mixed methods study was to explore spiritual development differences between online and on-campus students. For this study, spiritual maturation was measured by the locus of authority and view of self and others, primarily as measured by the God Image Scales. The assumption was that development is marked by a shift in locus of authority from an external to internal orientation and, along with this process, an individual's focus also moves from self to others. The first phase of the study was quantitative and consisted of the administration of the God Image Scales and the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale. The latter scales was administered to control for potential influence of participants providing responses they deemed to be expected or socially appropriate. Results revealed differences in the perspectives and experiences shared by the younger on-campus students and those shared by older online and graduate students. A second, qualitative phase of the study consisted of small group interviews conducted in chat rooms and email interviews conducted with individual students. Findings from this phase consisted of students' perceptions about God, spirituality, spiritual development, and spiritual maturity. Lastly, mixed methods analyses compared and contrasted the quantitative and qualitative results. Significant findings are summarized and discussed, and recommendations are offered to assist administration to support and challenge college students' spiritual development.
|Advisor:||Hoffman, John L.|
|School:||California State University, Fullerton|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Higher Education Administration, Educational leadership, Religious education|
|Keywords:||Adult learners, Christian education, Faith-based colleges, Spiritual development|
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