SIG 19 - Religious and Spiritual Education


Elina Kuusisto

University of Helsinki, Finland

Laura Hirsto

University of Eastern Finland, Finland

Alexander Unser

University of Wuerzburg, Germany

Mission statement


Religious and spiritual education is an interdisciplinary field of research into education, learning, development, and socialization at various levels at schools, universities, families, or communities with respect to religion and spirituality. Religion and spirituality are closely related fields of interest. Spirituality can be perceived as an ability to transcend to something (someone) which is greater than the self, and religion as a set of practices for establishing relationship to a transcendent reality, for the sake of obtaining human good or avoiding harm.
The Religious and Spiritual Education SIG brings together researchers from various backgrounds as theology, religious studies, psychology, pedagogy, educational studies, and philosophy. The SIG 19 is advocating empirical research that includes cognitive, social and emotional components. 

The SIG 19 will focus on the following topics and themes:


  • schools, families and communities as contexts for religious and spiritual learning and instruction
  • constraints and affordances for religious and spiritual development in schools, families and communities
  • educational and formation goals and practices of schools with respect to values, beliefs and worldviews
  • religious and spiritual socialization within families and communities
  • new ways of understanding religion and spirituality as educational fields


People who are interested in contributing to the next newsletter should contact the Coordinators.

Consult our conference archive here.


SIG 19 Biennial Conference 2018

Worldviews in creating meaning and purpose for learning
June 11-13, 2018
University of Eastern Finland, Joensuu, Finland

Conference Program

SIG 19 Conference 2018

6th Biennial Conference of EARLI SIG19 Religious and Spiritual Education
June 11-13, 2018

University of Eastern Finland
Joensuu campus, Aurora Building, Yliopistokatu 2
Rooms: AU111 and AU204

MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2018
11.00 Registration desk opens
11.00-12.30 Lunch
12.30 Opening of the Conference
13.00-14.00 Keynote 1 Ulrich Riegel
14.15-15.45 Paper Presentations
15.45 Coffee
16.15 Buss to Valamo monastery
17.15 Welcome by Mikael
17.45 Introduction to Valamo
19.30 Conference dinner

TUESDAY, JUNE 12, 2018
09.15-10.15 Paper Presentations
10.30-11.30 Keynote 2 Jenny Berglund
11.45-12.45 Paper Presentations
12.45-13.30 Lunch
13.30-14.30 Roundtable discussion & Poster session
14.30-15.30 Keynote 3 Shauna Morin
15.30-16.00 Coffee
16.00-17.30 Paper presentations
17.30-18.30 Business meeting

09.15-10.15 Keynote 4 Kirsi Tirri
10.30-11.30 Paper Presentations
11.30-12.30 Lunch
12.30-13.30 Paper presentations
13.30-14.00 Closing