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The Learning Habits of Twelfth Graders Attending Religious and Non-Religious Schools

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image of International Journal of Education and Religion
For more content, see Journal of Empirical Theology.

Using the 1992 NELS data set for twelfth graders, this study assessed whether students attending religious schools generally have better learning habits than students attending non-religious schools. The study examined learning habits that social scientists typically believe are important for excelling in school. These learning habits include the handing in of work on time, less absenteeism, taking harder courses, diligence, work habits, paying attention, doing more than what is expected, participating in class, and being prepared for class. The results indicate that religious school students outperform non-religious school students in five of the nine categories. More importantly, the two categories in which religious school students outperform their non-religious counterparts the most, diligence and taking harder courses; were the two categories most strongly related to performing well on achievement tests. The possible reasons for these differences are discussed. Differences between Catholic and non-Catholic religious school students were also examined.


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