This study sought to identify any smartphone usage with significant positive or negative relationships with the religiosity of LDS young adults, with the hypothesis that smartphone usage would indeed have significant relationships with religiosity, both positively and negatively. Over 1,000 BYU students were surveyed for their usage of 36 popular and religious apps and of 33 different categories of content consumption, their content sharing, and compulsive use. That data was compared with their private religiosity (prayer, scripture study, and thinking seriously about religion) and religious experience (strength of beliefs, feeling the Spirit, finding strength through their faith, etc.) BYU students' smartphone usage is outlined, with Facebook dominating social media use and most students studying their scriptures on their phones. BYU students' religiosity is outlined, revealing a very believing and actively religious student body. Different forms of smartphone usage do have very significant associations with private religiosity, both positive and negative. Smartphone usage behaviors shown to have the greatest negative relationship with religiosity, are, in descending order: consuming "erotic/pornographic" content, "LGBT news or personalities" content consumption, consuming content about "Video gaming", using the Netflix app, and using the Snapchat app. Smartphone usage behaviors shown to have the greatest positive relationship with religiosity, are, in descending order: "LDS teachings and doctrine" content consumption, using the Bible Videos app, using the Gospel Library app, using the LDS Tools app, and using the Mormon Tabernacle Choir app.
College and Department
Religious Education; Religious Education
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Fereday, Matthew R., "Smartphone Usage and Religiosity in LDS Young Adults" (2017). Theses and Dissertations. 6315.
smartphones, religiosity, LDS, media, emerging adults