Understanding the Intersection of Spirituality and Service Engagement Among Undergraduates From a Reasoned Action Approach

Curtis Lehmann

Abstract


Service engagement is critical to many higher education institutions. Past research has looked at spiritual change as a result of service engagement, but few studies have looked at how spirituality might contribute to engagement in service projects, particularly from a reasoned action approach. This quantitative study looked at God concept and religious motivation as predictors of intention to serve with two particular projects being offered at a faith-based university, an inner-city experience and a tutoring service. Participants were 305 ethnically diverse undergraduates. Data were analyzed using multiple regressions. The spirituality variables were associated with attitudes, social norms, and moral evaluations toward both service projects, as hypothesized. However, the spirituality variables were not significantly related with intention to serve for either service project. The findings suggest that spirituality may shape beliefs about service projects but may have little effect on intention to engage in service projects, at least in certain cases.

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