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Introducing the Astley–Francis Theology of Religions Index: construct validity among 13- to 15-year-old students

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The ‘theology of religions’ is concerned with the interpretation and evaluation of the divergent truth-claims and views of salvation that are asserted or implied by different religious traditions. This study proposes a new multi-choice index that distinguishes between six current positions within the theology of religions, characterised as Atheism, Agnosticism, Exclusionism, Inclusivism, Pluralism, and Interreligious perspective, with a further subdivision between two expressions of the pluralism perspective. The construct validity of this new measure is supported by the performance of the instrument in respect of a network of theories (regarding how these different positions may relate to the factors of sex, age, personal religiosity and attitude toward religious diversity) among a sample of 10,754 13- to 15-year-old students from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
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Keywords: Empirical theology; construct validity; psychology of religion; theology of religions

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Alister Hardy Religious Experience Research Centre, Wrexham Glyndwr University, Wrexham, UK 2: Warwick Religions & Education Research Unit, Centre for Education Studies, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK

Publication date: January 2, 2016

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