Spiritual euphoria, not doctrine, interests students.

I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue, unexercised and unbreathed, that never sallies out and sees her adversary, but slinks out of the race where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat.

John Milton, Areopagitica

The unrest that rocked the nation in 1968 also rustled the ivy on Christian campuses. Sometimes in slow-motion and with lower volume, evangelical collegians often function like delayed, videotape replays of their peers at secular campuses. This is true despite the long-standing caricature of Christian students as members of a monastic subculture. But that stereotype wasn’t completely true forty to fifty years ago when radios were banned in Christian college dormitories and classroom and dining halls had sexually segregated seating arrangements. In talking to Christian college administrators, students, and alumni last summer, I noted the following similarities between students on the evangelical campus and their peers on secular campuses.


During the last fifteen years, students at Christian colleges have been part of a nationwide slide in academic skills. J. Edward Hakes, vice-president and dean of the faculty at Trinity College in Deerfield, Illinois, says, “Students tend to be less prepared in the basics as a result of their secondary school. They have difficulty in writing a correct sentence and paragraph.” A decrease in the Christian collegian’s ability to think logically has been observed by Dr. C. Fred Dickason, chairman of the theology department at Moody Bible Institute. But at many evangelical colleges, the drop in the Scholastic Aptitude Test and other national standardized test scores was not as steep as the national ...

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