Abstract

This study focused on the impact of college environments on the spiritual development of African American students. Using the Armstrong Measure of Spirituality (AMOS) survey administered to 125 African American college students, the study sought to ascertain whether or not there were differences in spirituality as reported by African American students attending a historically Black college and African American students attending a predominantly White institution. Gender differences and differences based on students' classifications were also examined. The results revealed that African Americans attending a predominantly White institution reported higher levels of spirituality than African Americans attending a historically Black college. The results also showed significant differences among the students on 2 of the AMOS subscales—spiritual beliefs and spiritual actions—in relation to gender and grade classification. Specifically, African American males attending the historically Black college scored significantly lower on the spiritual beliefs variable than the entire sample of females and males attending the predominantly White institution. Additionally, African American males in lower divisions scored significantly less on spiritual beliefs than African American males in upper divisions and females. Plausible explanations for these differences include a greater need among African Americans attending predominantly White institutions (a minority status) to seek and rely on spirituality for support and as a coping mechanism, and the fact that spirituality is a developmental construct which may be a reason that helps to explain the differences between African American males in lower and upper divisions.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1543-3382
Print ISSN
0897-5264
Pages
pp. 299-314
Launched on MUSE
2013-05-30
Open Access
No
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