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Via Wordle.net Brandenberger, Bowan, Lapsley, and Hill July 26, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Via Wordle.net Brandenberger, Bowan, Lapsley, and Hill July 26, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Via Wordle.net Brandenberger, Bowan, Lapsley, and Hill July 26, 2009

2 Moral Purpose, College and Beyond: A Longitudinal Study Jay Brandenberger, Director of Research & Assessment Daniel Lapsley, Chairperson, Department of Psychology Patrick Hill, Postoctoral Research Associate Nick Bowman, Postdoctoral Research Associate University of Notre Dame Presented at the Association for Moral Education Conference Utrecht, The Netherlands July 4, 2009

3 Center for Social Concerns Celebrating 26 years at Notre Dame Report to the Office of the Provost Our staff  20 plus full-time faculty, administrative staff, and support personnel Mission The Center for Social Concerns of the University of Notre Dame facilitates community-based learning, research and service informed by Catholic Social Tradition. Through the Center, learning becomes service to justice.

4 Purpose “A stable and generalized intention to accomplish something that is at once meaningful to the self and is of consequence to the world beyond the self.” — Damon, Menon & Bronk (2004 )

5 Purpose incorporates: Identity Agency Efficacy and more A. Blasi: Moral identity develops through action, through seeing ourselves take responsibility Moral Purpose

6 Youniss and Yates, building on Erikson: (Y&Y, 1997, p. 155) industry/action necessary for identity development need to learn to “appraise experience” within a framework or ideology “important to discover the power of one’s agency” and “to see one’s agency coupled with that of previous generations” Moral Identity  Purpose

7 There is an ethical dimension bound up with the desire to live a purposive life Purpose may be the ground for living well the life that is good for one to live Purpose captures the classical notions of eudemonia and points to what it means to flourish

8 Purpose is an integrative, higher order construct Developmental Model of Moral Functioning: Moral Sensitivity   Moral Reasoning/Judgment Moral Motivation  Moral Behavior Purpose has the potential to animate each of the 4 components Moral Purpose

9 Moral Purpose and Human Flourishing: Brief description of the session/study: Moral purpose is an integrated and far-reaching construct central to conceptions of spirituality and human flourishing. And college experiences present important opportunities to foster a lasting sense of purpose. This paper presents a developing research model and findings from the Notre Dame Study of Moral Purpose. We have begun a longitudinal study, following over 1000 participants who entered college in Our findings suggest that students oriented to social purposes during the college years, and those who engage in forms of service, show higher levels of generativity, personal well-being, purpose, and/or integrity thirteen or more years after college. We will share our research framework and instruments, discuss implications for practice, and present a call for collaboration.

10 The Notre Dame Study of Moral Purpose  Builds on previous research  Employs longitudinal designs Research Questions (sample) Can distinct purpose orientations be identified empirically? What is the role of higher education in fostering purpose? Are purpose orientations predictive of future well-being, engagement, and the like?

11 Use of HERI/CIRP Freshman and Senior Surveys Advantages  Opportunity for large scale data collection on campus  National comparisons  Opportunity to add 20 additional questions (institution specific)  Opportunity to mark data (indicators of student participation)

12 Following the class of 1994 Time of Data Collection Population Surveys Completed Approx. Age Time 1 Fall entering 1 st year students, approx Time 2 Spring graduating seniors Time 3 Spring matched 1stYear/Senior match, IDs

13 Purpose Orientations Using the life goals on HERI surveys, we identified, via factor analyses, four purpose orientations:  Financial  Creative  Prosocial  Personal Recognition Some correlation, but distinct measures

14 Other measures during college Personal development during college relative to freshman year Overall satisfaction with college experience Participation in service-learning activities

15 Results: At Graduation Prosocial orientation associated with college satisfaction (Other 3 purpose orientations were not) Prosocial orientation associated with service- learning participation; the other three orientations were negatively associated with service learning

16 Time Three: Age 35 (approx) Used five additional measures at middle adulthood:  Loyola Generativity Scale  Integrity (measuring moral character and identity)  Personal growth and well-being (Ryff)  Purpose in Life (Ryff)  Youth Purpose Scale (Stanford Univ) Sample: 416 agreed to participate (from approx 1100)

17 Results: Time 3 Purpose orientations from HERI items again derived from factor analyses, yielding the same four factors Strong continuity of purpose orientations from senior year to age 35 (all correlations significant at p <.001) Overall, prosocial orientation highly predictive of well-being at middle adulthood 

18 Results: Time 3 Purpose Senior Year Generativity Well-Being: Personal Growth Well Being Purpose in Life Integrity Prosocial ★ ★ ns ★ Financialns Creative ? ns Recognitionns ★ = p <.01

19 Further Analyses College volunteering and service learning participation were significant predictors of adult volunteering and adult well-being Participation in diversity workshop during college predicted prosocial orientation at senior year, and well-being (personal growth) and volunteering in adulthood

20 Discussion Purpose orientations can be distinguished empirically Purpose orientations predict college outcomes Purpose orientations are stable overtime Prosocial orientation strong predictor of outcomes from senior year to middle adulthood: generativity, personal growth, and integrity Volunteering and SL during college predict prosocial orientation and adult outcomes

21 Next Steps  Broaden scope and sample  Enhanced measures of purpose, including qualitative  Collaboration and comparison across varied colleges/universities  Further support/funding

22 Thank You Contact Info: Jay Brandenberger Center for Social Concerns University of Notre Dame


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