This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Assessment of Spirituality in Counseling: The Relationship Between Spirituality and Mental Health




Brown, David

Type of Degree



Counseling Psychology
Counselor Education
School Psychology


The purpose of this research study was to investigate the possible relationship between two spirituality variables (religious coping styles and spiritual well-being) and two psychological variables (anxiety and depression). Also studied were differences between those who self-disclosed a spiritual/religious identify and those who did not. There were 122 participants in this study, consisting of 30 males (24.6%), 91 females (74.6%), and 1 (.8%) individual whom did not specify gender. Data was collected from a small private university in the Midwest and a large public university located in the Southeast. Of the 122 participants, 26 (21.3%) were recruited from the small private university, and 96 (78.7%) were recruited from the large public university. The subscales from two spirituality assessments (the Religious Problem-Solving Scale and the Spiritual Well-Being Scale) were compared to two mental health assessments: the Beck Anxiety Inventory and the Beck Depression Inventory-II. Multiple regression and multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) analyses revealed that participants endorsed an overall inverse relationship between the spirituality and mental health assessments. One specific spirituality subscale measuring existential well-being reported significant relationships with both mental health measures, as well as the greatest amount of influence on the mental health measures. The results of this research study are consistent with previous research. Limitations of this study, implications of this study, suggestions for future research, and suggestions for counselor education training are noted.