A Survey of Graduate Students’ Perspectives on the Integration of Faith and Learning
Little scholarly attention has been dedicated to the integration of faith and learning (IFL) for graduate students in Christian higher education. While the spiritual development of students is central to the mission of the Christian higher education institution, graduate students often have limited opportunities for spiritual development outside of class attendance, which underscores the need for the use of effective approaches to IFL by faculty within their courses. This research utilized an online survey completed by graduate students across disciplines in a private Christian university. Survey questions focused on students’ ratings of the general importance of IFL in choosing a graduate program, their perceptions of the effect of IFL on their spiritual development, the importance of specific IFL approaches used by their professors in the classroom, and examples of effective IFL. Results indicate that the majority of students valued IFL in their selection of a graduate program and felt their spiritual identity and understanding of their faith had deepened as a result of IFL. The majority of students also valued all types of IFL presented in the survey, but it was most important to students that their professors model Christian values and attitudes as a means of IFL in the classroom. Selected narrative descriptions of students' explanations of effective IFL are presented thematically and the implications of the data are discussed.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Cammy Purper, Dr. Elizabeth Morris, Dr. Amy Stumpf, Dr. Robin C. Duncan (Author)
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