Cooper Hodges (Faculty Mentor: Duane McBride, Psychology)
This study examined how religious internalization plays a significant role in buffering against external stressors. We specifically focused on two forms of religiosity internalization: identified regulation (i.e., believing in a faith because one wishes to) and introjected regulation (i.e., following faith due to external pressure). Additionally, we investigated how this relationship may vary by ethnicity and gender. Participants (N = 79) were undergraduate students, in attendance at an American university affiliated with the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and completed self-reported measures of perceived stress (Cohenn Perceived Stress Scale) and religiosity (lronson/Woods Spirituality/Religiousness Index and the Religious Self-Regulation Questionnaire ). Multiple linear regression analysis revealed that identified regulation was a significant predictor of stress perception levels compared to introjected regulation. Bivariate correlations indicated Whites were significantly more distressed by introjected religiosity, and that there were no significant variations between these variables by gender. We concluded that students who have a more internalized religious belief system are more likely to exhibit lower stress levels.