Gender Differences in the Spiritual Development of Adolescent Students Attending Modern Orthodox Jewish High Schools through the Lens of Prayer
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This study was a quantitative investigation to determine the differences between male and female Modern Orthodox Jewish adolescents' attitude towards God, as expressed through prayer. Using a forty five item likert scale, over one thousand students in six Modern Orthodox high schools were surveyed. Standard statistical analysis were employed to compare the responses of students who attend single gender school and coeducational schools, as well as compare male and female responses. Additional factors such as the association of summer camp attendance and/or participation in a youth group on positive attitude towards prayer were also studied. Significant differences were found in all but one area studied. It was found that Orthodox Jewish girls have a higher score than their male counterparts in establishing a personal relationship with God. Orthodox Girls were more likely to petition God for compassionate needs as well as give praise and thanks to God. Although it was anticipated that males would score higher on viewing God as an instrumental problem solver this was not borne out by the findings and indeed females scored higher on the instrumental scale. Males did score higher on ritual and alienation subscales. It is hoped that the results of this study will help guide the development of curriculum for the development of spirituality for Modern Orthodox adolescents.
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