The role of religious community to the mental wellbeing of young adolescents
Authors: Christian Andréasson and Linnéa Engholm
Supervisor: Torbjörn Kalin
This study examines differences in adolescent well-being between religious and non-religious youths, between groups of varying religious participation and lastly between those who mainly experience the social aspects of religion to those that focus on the fundamental aspects. Data was collected from the science project Longitudinal Research on Development in Adolescence (LoRDIA) and consists of 1231 adolescents. Data was collected via self-report questionnaires in classroom settings and was analyzed through univariate and bivariate analyzes. The main conclusions of this study are that there is a statistically significant difference in well-being between Christian and both non-religious adolescents and adolescents from the combined group of less frequent religions (like Hindu, Buddhism etc.) Results showed that Christian adolescents overall had a higher well-being than these groups. A significant difference was also found in adolescents that frequently participate in religious gatherings as they had an overall higher well-being compared to those that seldomly or never participate. Lastly, no significant differences were able to be discerned between adolescents who are religious in a more social sense and those who are more fundamental in their beliefs. The results are then discussed in relation to previous research and Durkheim’s theory about anomie and social community.
This research is financed by:
Swedish Research Council, FORTE, VINNOVA, Formas, Futurum Academy for Health and Care Jönköping County Council.