a journal of analysis and comment
advancing public understanding of religion and education
Vol. 34 No. 2
One consistent theme these days from our social commentators is the polarization of so many aspects of our public life, principally in the political and religious arenas. Civil discourse has been a consistent challenge. Our first article of this spring issue takes on this challenge in the college classroom in the context of a discussion about faith. Francis Dominic Degnin takes us through a pedagogy he developed for working through a definition of faith with students and, in the process, making them more self-critical and self-aware in this ‘era of religious extremes.’
In our second article, Robbie Steward and his colleagues explore religion and Christianity as points of diversity within counseling training programs. Acknowledging the tension between psychology and religion, originating with Freud and persisting through the 20th century, the authors note the increasing strength of voices over the decade, countering this longstanding tendency. In accordance with this growing acknowledgement of the influence of religion on psychology, Steward and his colleagues conducted a pilot study “to examine the level of preparedness counselor trainees may have in working with religious clients.” A second “purpose is to examine Christian trainees perceptions of and experiences in training” (p. 31).
A challenge to many liberal arts
colleges is maintaining their historic identity in an environment of increasing
religious pluralism. In the third
article of this issue, Robert Spach examines this ‘identity-relevance’
dilemma in a study of Presbyterian colleges in the
The impact of the Lilly Endowment’s Programs for the Theological Exploration of Vocation (PTEV) was the subject of one of our articles by Jennifer Haworth and Mary de Villiers in the Winter 2006 issue. We revisit this initiative in a multi-institutional study by Sarah Birmingham Drummond. She enumerates lessons learned about planning for change in Christian colleges derived from the study of three distinctively different institutions: one historically-black college, one small liberal arts college, and one large Catholic university.
We track international issues in Religion
& Education and periodically publish pieces that we feel are of broad
interest for our readership and that highlight trans-national concerns.
Our concluding article is one such piece and is contributed by Iftikhar
The cover art for this issue is called Diana by Antionette Simmons Hodges. It was part of the October 2001 exhibit, A Question of Faith, at the University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art.
Michael D. Waggoner, Editor