Date of Award

2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Counseling Psychology

First Advisor

Alan Burkard

Second Advisor

Chris Brownson

Third Advisor

Lisa Edwards

Abstract

Using undergraduate data from a recent study on the Nature of College Student Suicidality, this paper explored the impact of campus activity involvement, individual secularity and institutional secularity as risk and/or protective factors for college student suicidal ideation and attempts. Results revealed that students who participated in at least one campus activity and students who affiliate with a Christian faith were less likely to seriously consider suicide in the last twelve months. Gender differences were found in the relationship between institutional secularity and serious consideration of suicide, with non-secular institutions serving as a protective factor for women, but not men. Individual secularity was the only independent variable correlated with reduced rates of suicide attempts. Implications for higher education decision-making and counseling center practices are discussed, and future research directions are proposed.

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