Catholic Social Teaching in Their Own Words: Oral Histories of College Students Learning CST

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Michelle Nickerson
Harry Dammer

Abstract

This research offers insight into what undergraduates at five Catholic colleges and universities learned about Catholic Social Teaching (CST) during their college experience. The study used a purposive sample of twenty-six personal interviews with students who were exposed to CST either in the classroom or through some co-curricular activity. The interviews consisted of open-ended and demographic questions resulting in oral histories about the students’ opinions and experiences relative to CST. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of the interviews revealed generally consistent findings, with some variation among the most diverse students in the sample. The results provide support for the intentional teaching of CST in Catholic institutions and suggest potential practices for teaching CST with diverse populations.

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