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ERIC Number: EJ1102046
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1536-3759
Student Constructions of Fit: Narratives about Incongruence at a Faith-Based University
Alleman, Nathan F.; Robinson, Jessica A.; Leslie, Elizabeth A.; Glanzer, Perry L.
Christian Higher Education, v15 n3 p169-184 2016
Decades of student persistence and retention literature has brought to light factors of social, academic, and religious fit that influence a student's decision to remain at or depart from an institution. At Christian institutions, increasing student pluralism raises the likelihood that students will not fit religiously. This qualitative study of 21 first-time, full-time students contributes to the existing literature by exploring how students who already feel they do not fit for religious reasons work at constructing a sense of fit at a Christian research university. Many participants coped with religious discontinuity by redefining specifically Christian practices and teachings in terms that were personally palatable: as either general moral lessons that would help them to be a better person or as cultural insights that would benefit them social and professionally in the future. In many cases, university staff were instrumental. Finally, participants worked to construct an acceptable level of fit, or fit threshold, through various combinations of social fit, academic fit, and religious fit, often compensating for one with others. As Christian institutions increasingly invite students from diverse religious backgrounds into their campus community, understanding ways that these students attempt to adapt to religious incongruence will be paramount.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A