Uniform TitleBehavioral correlates of a sense of religiosity and purpose within a sample of urban, fifth grade students
NameKash, Virginia Megan (author), Elias, Maurice (chair), Kelly, Shalonda (internal member), Ogilvie, Daniel (internal member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
Psychology and religion
DescriptionResearch with adults has shown that religiosity and a sense of purpose are associated with positive mental health. Much less is known about whether these findings translate to children and adolescents. The current study sought to illuminate whether preadolescents' written expressions of religiosity and purpose relate to fewer classroom behavioral problems. Exploratory analyses also compared the relative predictive strength of three dimensions (content, voice and word choice) as well as two forms (peak and modal) of expression of religiosity and purpose. This study's data were collected from 151 fifth grade students and their teachers in a low income, urban school district. Results showed that, after accounting for language arts GPA and gender, stronger expressions of purpose on the content and voice dimensions were related to fewer externalizing problem behaviors. Students who expressed religiosity in their essays were more likely to fall below the median for externalizing problem behaviors than students who did not express religiosity. Suggestions for improving methods for assessing and coding essays are discussed. The relative strength in prediction of the content and voice dimensions warrants consideration for future researchers using traditional narrative content analysis procedures that rely wholly on word count procedures.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 81-90).
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.