Religion and Higher Education in Europe and North America illuminates the experiences of staff and students in higher education as they negotiate the university environment. Religious extremism has been rising across Europe, whilst recent attacks have thrown public debate around the place of religion on campus, the role of universities in recognising and managing religious fundamentalism and freedom of speech on campus into sharper focus.
Despite these debates, research exploring religion on campus has been largely absent from discourse on higher education outside of America, with policy and practices designed to deal with religion on campus largely founded on supposition rather than evidence. This book speaks into that void, including results from recent studies in the field which form an empirically grounded base from a broad variety of perspectives on religion at universities. Aiming to offer a deeper perspective, more dialogue, and engagement on the experiences of students, Religion and Higher Education in Europe and North America presents us not only with an opportunity to counter growing trends of intolerance, but for people to connect with the humanity of others.
Focusing on what research reveals about staff and students’ experiences, it incorporates research from different academic disciplines including sociology, education, social policy, theology and religious studies, and across different faith and belief groups. This thought-provoking and challenging volume features chapters written by researchers involved in informing policy and practice relating to religion and belief in higher education in the UK, US, Canada, France and the Netherlands . Spanning the academic-practitioner divide, students and academics interested in the sociology of religion and of higher education, as well as those responsible for the practical management of campus life, will find this text of particular importance.
Introduction Part One. Patterns and Trends: Insights from Survey Research 1. Religion and Higher Education in the United States: Extending the Research 2. How Religion or Belief frame Participation and Access in UK Higher Education 3. Religiously Unaffiliated Students in the United States: Characteristics, Experiences, and Outcomes Part Two: The Religious Student Experience: Learning From Qualitative Studies 4. The Contested Campus: Christian Students in UK Universities 5. Invisible Islam: Muslim Student Migrants' Everyday Practices in French Secular Universities 6. "My Horns Come Out in My Attitude!" Negotiating Jewish Student Identity and the Politics of Identification in Canada Charlotte Schallié 7. Samosas and Simran: University Sikh Societies in Britain 8. Secularism, Free Speech and the Public University: Student Engagement with Israel-Palestine in a British Campus 9. Navigating the Secular: Religious Students’ Experiences of Attending a Red-brick University Part Three: The Place of Policies, Structures and Curricula 11. From cognitive Science to Personal Leadership: the Role of Religion and Personal Life Orientation in Curriculum Development processes within the domain of Religious Studies 13. Developing Religious Literacy in Higher Education
Religion and Higher Education in Europe and North America is an important contribution to a broad topic. Its very breadth provides an overview of approaches and cases that the focused single-authored research monograph would not.
Edwin Bacon, Birkbeck, University of London, UK