School of Education


Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)


Larry Thomas Crites


Worldview, Teens, Youth, Public School, High School, Evangelical, Christian, Biblical Worldview, Christian Worldview, Adolescent, Religion, Phenomenological, Transcendental


Christianity | Education | Religion


Although much research has been conducted regarding Christian worldview in private high schools and Christian colleges, very little information exists regarding Christian worldview at public high schools. The purpose of this transcendental phenomenological study is to describe how 10 evangelical students in public high schools interpret content areas through their worldview. The study answered the following critical question: How do evangelical students in public high schools interpret content areas through their worldviews? Participants were found using criterion sampling in central Pennsylvania and document analysis, interviews, and focus groups were used to collect data. Moustakas’s (1994) approach was used for data analysis, which includes epoché, horizonalization, textural and structural descriptions, and a composite description. Member checks, audits, and codebooks were used in order to ensure the trustworthiness of the study. The results of this transcendental phenomenological study showed that the participants experienced content interpretation through the themes of parallel, truth, presentation, and interpersonal relatability. While these interpretations of content were largely thoughtful and deep, students remained reluctant to express these understandings in the public school classroom. Fowler’s (1981) stages of faith framework was used to reveal the theoretical implications of the study, which showed that the participants remained mostly in the synthetic- conventional and individuative-reflective stages. The study suggested that students may benefit from more worldview conversations in the classroom and that churches and parents should emphasize the presentation of content, in addition to the truth of content, as an important aspect of worldview interpretation. Further research using different demographics would be beneficial as a way to highlight potential transferability of results.