Daniel Ziegler


Religious education; Curriculum development; Biblical studies; Higher education; Conservative Mennonite Conference; Emerging adulthood; Religiosity; Service learning; Church attendance


This study was designed to provide Rosedale Bible college, a Conservative Mennonite Conference school in Ohio, with critical information to increase its understanding of the educational choices of emerging adults from its sponsoring denomination and the way those choices correlate with church involvement and volunteerism later in life. The study also offers a glimpse into the educational and religious context of these young adults and the denomination they were part of as youth. A 16-question survey was distributed to 1,068 individuals ages 26-32 who attended one of the denomination’s churches when in high school. The survey queried respondents on personal data, educational choices, church involvement, and volunteerism. A total of 240 valid surveys were received, including 47 respondents who had attended the denomination’s college. Through cross tabulation and testing for statistical significance, the research found that attendance at the denomination’s college was moderately related to greater regular church attendance compared to those who did not attend the college. In addition, attendance at the college was moderately related to a lower likelihood of regular civic volunteerism. Research also found a strong relationship between a secular education and a lower likelihood of regular church attendance later in life, compared to those who participated in formal religious educational experiences as young people.



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