Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Business Administration

First Advisor

Nelson, Harry


The present study focuses on the further development of the increasingly popular field of spirituality and religiosity in the workplace (SRW) by providing a parsimonious definition, and a three dimensional model for the construct of spirituality grounded in the historical tradition of the perennial philosophy. The study subsequently adopts a multi-study validation process to develop the 21 item universal spirituality scale (USS). By creating a definition for spirituality that has a firm historical grounding and a universal outlook, the study addresses the dilemma of Religiosity vs. Spirituality faced by researchers in this area. This is further supported by the use of multiple samples and participants from three major world faith traditions (both eastern and western). The three factor model for spirituality derived in Study A (n=159) is corroborated by a separate sample of participants in Study B (n=181). The USS shows high levels of internal consistency reliability (α = 0.90, inter-item correlation = 0.32, and split-half, Guttman's coefficient value of 0.77). In Study C, criterion related validity is established by conducting a comparison of the USS with the DUREL - Duke University Religiosity Index (Koenig & Bussing, 2010). Results show that correlations were moderately high (0.20 to 0.41) at significance levels of 0.05 and 0.01 between expected factors for the DUREL and USS. Notably, there is no significant correlation for the factor of Universality (USS) indicating discriminant validity. Group differences for spirituality are measured in Study D (Known-groups validity). The results of parametric and non-parametric tests in Study D clearly illustrate that the USS is sensitive enough to detect differences in means in expected directions when administered to two different groups. Finally, high levels of test-retest reliability are noted in Study E (R = 0.73). Overall, the universal spirituality scale (USS) exhibits strong levels of validity and reliability. The study addresses the concerns surrounding the literature in the SRW area by offering a definition and universal framework for spirituality as well as a reliable and valid instrument for its measurement.




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