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Student Researcher Seeks Participants for Religious Disaffiliation Survey


Loma Linda University Clinical Psychology student Alex Larson is looking for participants who can help provide data about Adventist views on religious disaffiliation. Larson describes the research project this way:

Attention Seventh-day Adventists! I need your help with my Masters thesis research. I'm conducting an anonymous, in-depth survey that focuses on Seventh-day Adventist attitudes regarding disaffiliation from the Seventh-day Adventist church, including the example of former SDA pastor Ryan Bell. This survey also allows for an analysis of the role of God and religion in the lives of Seventh-day Adventists, and their views on truth and religious disaffiliation in general. To participate, you need to be at least 18 years old and currently identify as a Seventh-day Adventist.

Larson, a graduate of Pacific Union College, says that several would-be subjects who call themselves former Adventists have inquired about whether they might participate in the survey as well. "What matters [for this study]," Larson says, "is if they currently still identify. This is because I'm looking at how people who have "stayed in the church" are viewing those who leave–I'm expecting that more than a handful of people who have responded have considered leaving at some point, and…I want to hear from them."

Feedback from ex-Adventists demonstrates the possibilities for research targeted more specifically at those who have left the Adventist denomination. I've been getting quite a few ex-Adventists who were wondering [if they could participate], which tells me that perhaps I need to look at future research in interviewing ex-Adventists on their opinions," Larson said.

The survey takes approximately 25 minutes to complete.

The letter of informed consent, included in the study, states the following:

If you participate in this survey, your answers will be anonymous and securely stored in password-protected research database. However, as with all internet communication, it is possible that through intent or accident someone other than the intended recipient could see your response. Please do not disclose any confidential or identifying information about yourself or others. In addition, when we receive the results, no information will link your answers back to you.

Although participation might not benefit you directly, the information gleaned from this study will potentially contribute to a better understanding of the perspectives of Seventh-day Adventists on an action that often causes distress to individuals as well as their church communities. Please see this study as an important way to anonymously provide your perspectives on this issue to your fellow Seventh-day Adventist church members.

In order to reach a wide cross-section of Adventist Church members, Larson has asked several Adventist media sites to share information about the survey. If you meet the criteria and would like to participate in this study, PLEASE CLICK HERE.


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