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ACSI Releases New Tool to Measure Spiritual Formation in Students

Feb 12, 2024, 14:01 PM by Caitlyn Harding

Colorado Springs, CO- The Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) is glad to announce a new, research-validated tool, the Flourishing Faith Index (FFI), which measures the biblical worldview and spiritual formation in Christian schools and their communities.

ACSI Director of Research Rian Djita explained how this new research tool functions and why it is beneficial.

“The Flourishing Faith Index is ACSI’s new, rigorously developed research instrument. The research model identifies an inner core and an outer core. The inner core, ‘The Flourishing Faith Core,’ organizes measures of flourishing faith into the three domains of Head, Heart, and Hands. The outer core, 'The Biblical Worldview & Spiritual Formation Ring,’ measures the Christian school community’s impact on faith formation in three further domains— Intellectual, Nurture, and Practical."

ACSI began researching how to measure these indicators in 2022. The domains provide a picture of the areas in which Christian schools can focus their efforts and resources to support spiritual formation in their students. In an increasingly secular world, the challenge of preparing students to develop a strong foundation of faith is perhaps more critical than ever. The FFI complements ACSI’s Flourishing School Culture Instrument (FSCI). The FSCI is a more comprehensive roadmap that measures five domains and 35 research-based constructs. The FFI focuses on one of the five domains— the Purpose Domain—as a deeper concentration of a school’s spiritual formation indicators.

In total, there are approximately 60 questions in FFI. About 20 questions are related to Flourishing constructs, 25 questions are related to Propositional Faith, and about 15-20 are related to demographic information.

Cindy Dodds, ACSI Chief of Flourishing Initiatives, shared how the FFI will aid in strengthening Christian schools and communities.  

“Christian schools are not just great places to get an excellent education, they are places where faith is often birthed and should always be nurtured,” she said. “Most Christian schools clearly define elements of faith formation in their expected student outcomes. When leaders administer the Flourishing Faith Index, they will be able to identify growth opportunities and highlight their strengths as they engage their community in collectively nurturing the faith of their students.”

ACSI’s leaders believe that the FFI will reinforce faithfulness, efficacy, and school improvement as Christian schools carry out their mission.

Learn more about the FFI at acsi.org/ffi.

About ACSI:  

Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, ACSI exists to strengthen Christian schools and equip Christian educators worldwide as they prepare students academically and inspire them to become devoted followers of Jesus Christ. ACSI advances excellence in Christian schools by enhancing the professional and personal development of Christian educators and providing vital support functions for Christian schools through multiple services, including teacher and administrator certification, school accreditation, legal/legislative assistance, and curriculum publishing. Serving more than 25,000 schools in 108 countries, ACSI helps more than 5.5 million students worldwide connect to Christian education.  

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