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ERIC Number: EJ1075402
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1536-3759
Called to Make a Difference: The Experiences of Students Who Thrive on Faith-Based Campuses
Derrico, Cindy M.; Tharp, Jennifer L.; Schreiner, Laurie A.
Christian Higher Education, v14 n5 p298-321 2015
Research on the contribution of psychosocial factors to holistic student success in the context of the distinctive mission of Christian colleges and universities remains limited despite increased attention given to such factors in broader studies of student success. In recent years, the study of thriving has added to the measurement of psychosocial factors that contribute to student success. Thriving is conceptualized as levels of intellectual, interpersonal, and psychological vitality that result in student success. This article presents the results of the qualitative phase of a longitudinal sequential explanatory mixed-methods study of changes in thriving over the course of one semester from interviews with 23 students on five faith-based campuses. The study explored the experiences, programs, and psychological processes that influenced increases and decreases in thriving. Four themes emerged from the data analysis: (a) engaged learning as an outcome of faculty and student commitment, (b) relationships as a context for support, motivation, and a sense of fit, (c) faith as a lens for reframing events, and (d) a sense among students that they are called to make a difference. Faith-based institutions can contribute to the success of their students through use of high-impact teaching and learning practices, creating a sense of community on campus, building realistic optimism through classroom approaches and advising, and promoting the exploration and clarification of purpose and calling. Suggestions for future research include study replication in non--faith-based private and public institutions and longer longitudinal studies of changes in thriving.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A