Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Burchard, Waldo W.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Sociology and Anthropology


Student ethics; Attitude change


This is a study of the attitude changes of college students. Although this topic has been studied by others, the findings and conclusions of a number of works of research do not exhibit consensus. From among the sampling techniques used in previous studies, three were brought together. Utilizing the same instru­ment at the same large midwestern university, one panel, two trend, and two cross-sectional groups were analyzed. From among freshmen and seniors, men and women, of 1962 and 1965 there was an analysis of the attitude changes they experienced in the areas of religion, dating choices, petting, and premarital sex. Based on the suggestions of the literature, it was hypothesized that in a comparison of the attitudes of college students, the seniors will be more liberal in their attitudes than the freshmen, and during the college years attitudes toward religion, petting, dating and premarital sex will change in the direction of greater liberality as the student progresses through successive grades. This hypothesis was accepted on the basis of consistency among the sub-hypotheses used to test it. Another hypothesis that was tested using only the panel sample of 174 matched pairs of individuals attempted a detailed analysis of some of the possible background and campus environmental factors that may be associated with attitude change between the freshmen and senior years. This hypothesis states that among a panel sample of students who were freshmen in 1962 and seniors in 1965, the degree of attitude change will vary for individuals with different back­ground factors and different environmental experience. This hypothesis was rejected on the basis of an almost completely uniform lack of support among the sub-hypotheses used to test it. It was concluded that the findings of the first hypothesis are more significant than the findings of the second hypothesis. Utilizing the research design of the first hypothesis in studies of reliability is what is needed as a next step in this type of research.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [84]-87)


115 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type