Atheism and academic performance

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A number of factors go into academic performance (See: Key skills and factors for academic success).

Emotional/intrapersonal intelligence is important in terms of human performance in the intellectual realm. For example, the social scientists Andrea L. Duckworth and Martin Seligman found that higher degrees of self-discipline better predict higher academic grades than IQ scores do among adolescents.[1] See also: Atheism and intelligence

Atheists commonly have lower emotional intelligence/interpersonal intelligence and social intelligence as can be seen in the social science data, historical data and other data given in the articles directly below:

Atheism and poor relationship with father/mother/parents

Parental involvement is positively correlated with student academic performance.[2]

In 2012, a Georgetown University study was published indicating that only about 30 percent of those who grow up in an atheist household remain atheists as adults.[3] See also: Atheism and its retention rate in individuals

The Cambridge Companion to Atheism which was edited by the atheist philosopher Michael Martin declared:

Continuity and discontinuity in any identity may be a function of interpersonal networks, especially involving intimate relations. Apostasy and conversion can both be seen as a rejection of parental identity and parental beliefs. It “might well be symptomatic of familial strain and dissociation... apostasy is to be viewed as a form of rebellion against parents” (Caplovitz and Sherrow, 1977:50).[4]

A troubled/non-existent relationship with a father is theorized to influence a person to become an atheist.[5] Dr. Paul Vitz wrote a book entitled Faith of the Fatherless in which he points out that after studying the lives of more than a dozen leading atheists he found that a large majority of them had a father who was present but weak, present but abusive, or absent.[6][7] Dr. Vitz also examined the lives of prominent theists who were contemporaneous to their atheist counterparts and from the same culture and in every instance these prominent theists had a good relationship with his father.[8] Dr. Vitz has also stated other common factors he observed in the leading atheists he profiled: they were all intelligent and arrogant.[9]

The book Atheist Persona: Causes and Consequences by John J. Pasquini, Th.D. indicates that many of the prominent atheists (and prominent practical atheists) who had dysfunctional/absent fathers that he lists in his book also had dysfunctional/absent mothers.[10] See also: Atheism and poor relationships with parents and Irreligion and domestic violence

Hostility towards religious conservatives in academia and quality of educational outcomes

See also: Academia and intellectual development and Values within academia

Jewish columnist Dennis Prager has stated that a causal factor of atheism is the "secular indoctrination of a generation."[11] Prager stated that "From elementary school through graduate school, only one way of looking at the world – the secular – is presented. The typical individual in the Western world receives as secular an indoctrination as the typical European received a religious one in the Middle Ages."[12] In 2013, an study found that academia was less likely to hire evangelical Christians due to discriminatory attitudes.[13]

Dinesh D'Souza has pointed out that atheists have focused considerable efforts on the public schools in order to indoctrinate young people into atheistic beliefs.[14]

Research indicates that religious conservatives face discrimination in hiring within academia.[15]

In addition, college is clearly not delivering the goods in terms of intellectual development for a large percentage of its students. An American study found that forty-five percent of students achieved no significant improvement in their critical thinking, reasoning or writing skills during their first two years of college. After four years, 36 percent displayed no significant increases in these so-called "higher order" thinking skills.[16] Students, particularly those who made poor curriculum choices, are increasingly angry that college does not adequately prepare them for the marketplace and leaves them with a pile of debt.[17] Many academics quality of work related to science is frequently substandard.[18] Creation Ministries International argues that the recent epidemic of scientific fraud within the scientific/academic community is related to atheistic and evolutionary morality/ideology (see: Atheism and morality).[19][20]

The low quality of work done by many atheist academics combined with their hostility towards religious conservatives is not surprising given that atheism/agnosticism lack proof and evidence that they are valid, while the Bible and Christianity have an abundant amount of evidence supporting their veracity (see: Christian apologetics).

Atheists and agnostics rarely point out that universities such as Harvard, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, and many others were founded by Christians.[21][22] Also, the scientific revolution occurred in Christianized Europe and many of the fathers of various branches of science were Christians (see: Christianity and science).

Presently, there appears to be a higher education bubble that will burst.[23]

Education and ineffectiveness of many atheist professor indoctrination attempts

See also: Atheist indoctrination and Religion and education

Stijn Ruiter, senior researcher at the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement, and Frank van Tubergen, a professor of sociology in Utrecht, analyzed 'religious participation' in 60 countries. Their research found no effect of education in terms of religiosity, but instead indicated that social/economic insecurity and the environment people grow up in have a significant impact.[24][25][26]

For more information, please see:

Christianity and academic excellence

See also


  1. Self-Discipline Outdoes IQ in Predicting Academic Performance of Adolescents, Andrea L. Duckworth and Martin Seligman, Positive Psychology Center, University of Pennsylvania
  2. Parent involvement and student academic performance: A multiple mediational analysis
  3. Study: Atheists Have Lowest 'Retention Rate' Compared to Religious Groups
  4. The Cambridge Companion to Atheism, edited by Michael Martin, page 302, published in 2006
  6. Vitz, Paul, The Psychology of Atheism, September 24, 1997 (lecture notes taken by an audience member).
  7. Anders, Kerby, Atheists and Their Fathers (Probe Ministries)
  10. Atheist Persona: Causes and Consequences by John J. Pasquini, 2014, University Press of America, page 3
  11. How atheism is being sold in America
  12. How atheism is being sold in America
  13. Suspicions Confirmed: Academia Shutting Out Conservative Professors
  14. The atheist indoctrination project
  15. Study of college education and critical thinking skills
  16. Forbes - Higher education bubble
  17. The Short Answer is Not Much These Days
  18. Why the epidemic of fraud exists in science today by Jerry Bergman
  19. Morals decline linked to belief in evolution by David Catchpoole Published: 5 July 2000; republished 21 October 2009(GMT+10)
  22. Insecurity not education determines church attendance
  23. Religious Attendance in Cross-National Perspective, British Religion in Numbers, Posted on February 21, 2010 by Clive Field
  24. Religious Attendance in Cross-national Perspective: A Multilevel Analysis of 60 Countries by Stijn Ruiter and Frank van Tubergen, American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 115, No. 3, pp. 863-95