Religion and Educational Ideals in Contemporary Taiwan


Jiexia Elisa Zhai, Department of Sociology and Gerontology and Asian/Asian American Studies, Miami University, Upham Hall, Room 375, Oxford, OH 45056. E-mail:


The relationship between religion and educational ideals in Taiwan is explored using the Taiwan Social Change Survey (1990, 1995, 2000, and 2005). Religion seems to influence the overall level of educational ideals. Both before and after controls, Taiwanese Protestants have the highest educational ideals for both boys and girls; the nonreligious have the second highest ideals. Members of the new religious movement Yi-Guan-Dao and Catholics have the lowest ideals, while folk religionists/Taoists and Buddhists are in the middle and not significantly different from each other. We discuss possible mechanisms of influence and how our findings speak to the available literature on religion and education in the United States and elsewhere.