Education Doctorate

Year Approved


First Advisor

Paulson, Craig


As Christian higher educational institutions and particularly Council of Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) member institutions seek to become more diverse bodies and prepare students to become people of influence in a pluralistic global society, educators must know and understand the effects of students’ religious ideologies on their openness to others and their willingness to engage with diversity-infused pedagogy. The purpose of this study was the connection of students’ religious ideologies to their openness to diverse others, those culturally different, with the understanding that openness to others affects the efficacy of diversity infused pedagogy. The research demonstrated students’ religious ideologies as a predictor of openness to diverse others. The study considered the effect of student soteriological (salvation) perspectives on openness to others. Students with a strong focus on a personal attainment of heaven (a heaven-focused perspective) proved to be less open to diverse others than students with a perspective less focused on such personal attainment. An outcome of the study was the development of a new scale to measure a heaven-focus salvation or soteriological perspective. The study also revealed that students with a fundamentalist ideology exhibited a truant openness to others. Most importantly, the study demonstrated that students with strong heaven-focus perspectives also exhibited fundamentalist ideologies, which should give pause to diversity officers of CCCU member institutions. The study provides vital outcomes that can inform future Christian higher educational diversity initiatives and diversity-infused pedagogy

Degree Name

Education Doctorate

Document Type

Doctoral dissertation