Date of Award:

5-2011

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department:

School of Teacher Education and Leadership

Advisor/Chair:

Scott Hunsaker

Abstract

The present study explored the relationship between Latter-day Saint (LDS) seminary students' in-class oral participation and their perceived in-class spiritual experiences according to LDS theology. Since the release of the Teaching Emphasis in 2003, LDS seminary leadership has consistently emphasized the facilitating relationship between student in-class oral participation and desired spiritual outcomes of LDS seminary students. However, no known studies to date have gathered and analyzed data specific to varied amounts of LDS seminary student in-class oral participation or perceptions of in-class spiritual experience to evaluate the relationship between these two variables. Data regarding in-class oral participation and perceived spiritual experience were obtained via a self-report survey from 563 LDS seminary students. Participants were from classes of 25 randomly selected released-time LDS seminary teachers in Salt Lake, Summit, and Wasatch counties in the state of Utah. Data were analyzed using Pearson correlation, multiple regression, and analysis of variance. Findings indicated a statistically significant correlation (r = .32, p < .01) between self-reported amounts of participant seminary students' in-class oral participation and perceived spiritual experience, with four significant (p < .05) oral participatory predictors of perceived spiritual experience (reading/reciting something out loud, explaining LDS doctrines to others, singing, and testifying to others by expressing beliefs), and significant mean differences (p < .05) of perceived in-class spiritual experience between low, medium, and high oral participating seminary students. The present study explores the practical implications and recommendations for future research from these findings.

Comments

The present study explored the relationship between Latter-day Saint (LDS) seminary students' in-class oral participation and their perceived in-class spiritual experiences according to LDS theology. Since the release of the Teaching Emphasis in 2003, LDS seminary leadership has consistently emphasized the facilitating relationship between student in-class oral participation and desired spiritual outcomes of LDS seminary students. However, no known studies to date have gathered and analyzed data specific to varied amounts of LDS seminary student in-class oral participation or perceptions of in-class spiritual experience to evaluate the relationship between these two variables. Data regarding in-class oral participation and perceived spiritual experience were obtained via a self-report survey from 563 LDS seminary students. Participants were from classes of 25 randomly selected released-time LDS seminary teachers in Salt Lake, Summit, and Wasatch counties in the state of Utah. Data were analyzed using Pearson correlation, multiple regression, and analysis of variance. Findings indicated a statistically significant correlation (r = .32, p < .01) between self-reported amounts of participant seminary students' in-class oral participation and perceived spiritual experience, with four significant (p < .05) oral participatory predictors of perceived spiritual experience (reading/reciting something out loud, explaining LDS doctrines to others, singing, and testifying to others by expressing beliefs), and significant mean differences (p < .05) of perceived in-class spiritual experience between low, medium, and high oral participating seminary students. The present study explores the practical implications and recommendations for future research from these findings.

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