Factors Relating to Diminished Confidence in Core Christian Doctrines Among Students in Public Colleges and Universities: A Mixed Methods Study
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The purpose of this research study was to explore factors relating to diminished confidence in core Christian doctrines among public college students. Research reports thirty to sixty percent of young adults spiritually decline and disengage from church after high school. An online survey instrument was used to survey college seniors and recent graduates. Faith based questions were derived from the Short Christian Orthodoxy (SCO) scale developed by Hunsberger in 1987. Following the quantitative portion of the research, respondents were selected at random for the qualitative portion of this mixed method study. Follow-up interviews were conducted to provide further information regarding factors that related to diminishment of belief in core Christian doctrines. This research found that confidence in orthodox Christian belief significantly decreases while in public college. I offer practical implications and applications for churches and families to best prepare Christian students to maintain belief before entering public colleges and universities.