Date of Award:

1-1-1976

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Psychology

Advisor/Chair:

James P. Shaver

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of religious affiliation to the authoritarianism and open-closed mindedness of students at two institutions of higher learning, controlling for sex, re ported church attendance, state in which the person reported residence as a child, and city size of reported childhood residency.

The sample for this study was selected from junior and senior students at Utah State University (n=l,409) and Weber State College (n=837). The subjects for whom data were analyzed indicated affiliation with the following religious groups: Agnostic, Baptist, Catholic, Christian, Episcopalian, Jewish, Lutheran, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Methodist, Presbyterian, Protestant, and Other. Low and Shaver (1971) had administered to each subject the California F Scale and the 40-item Dogmatism Scale to obtain quantitate estimates of authoritarianism and dogmatism. Demographic information such as sex, frequency of church attendance, state of childhood residency, and city size of childhood residency, was also obtained from each subject . The Low-Shaver data were reanalyzed to make more sensitive tests of the relationship of sex, frequency of church attendance, the state in which the person resided as a child, and city size of childhood residency to stated religious affiliation and to F and D Scale mean scores.

Several significant differences were obtained. The factor of religion was significant for both the D and f Scale with the subjects indicating affiliation with the fundamentalist religions receiving higher scores than those affiliated with less fundamental religions. The effect of sex was significant--males scoring higher than females on both scales . The religion by sex interaction was significant on both the D and F Scales, due large ly to the differing direction of mean differences of subjects indicating Jewish preference. This finding was interpreted with caution due to the small sample drawn primarily from Utah. A significant curvilinear relation was obtained between church attendance and both the 0 and F Scale means, with those indicating frequent church attendance receiving higher D and F Scale scores. The main effect of city size of childhood residency was significant on both the D and F Scales 1 with subjects com ing from smaller communities receiving higher mean 0 and F Scale Rcores.

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