Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2019

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors



First Advisor

Murat Iyigun

Second Advisor

Terra McKinnish

Third Advisor

Amanda Stevenson


This research explores the impact of six different adverse life events on religiosity by utilizing a nationally representative dataset of the entire Australian population, combining information on religious importance, religious attendance, and a variety of adverse life events. We exploit the longitudinal dimension of the dataset by using fixed-effects estimations to account for time and individual variations. We found that the importance of religious beliefs increases in response to within the past year occurrence of the death of a friend, death of a relative, and personal injury. Being a victim of physical violence cause a higher increase in the importance of religious beliefs for highly religious individuals and individuals living in the most disadvantaged areas of Australia 1-3 years following the incident. On average, the results are in line with the religious coping theory.