Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-3-2023

Faculty Advisor(s)

Dr. Ann Gordon


Despite persistent scientific consensus urging immediate action, political polarization, and skepticism have hindered effective climate change mitigation, especially in the United States. This paper explores the factors influencing climate change attitudes among different groups, focusing on right-wing affiliates and Christian believers. Drawing on the Anti-Reflexivity Thesis (McCright and Dunlap, 2001-2010) and Information Processing Theory (Wood & Vedlitz, 2007), we investigate the effects of individual characteristics, including partisan ideology, party identification, educational attainment, and Christian faith. Using Wave 7 (2021) of the Chapman Survey of American Fears Survey, a nationwide sample of different fears among U.S. adults, this study aims to identify indicators of skepticism and shift public interest towards prioritizing climate change mitigation. I anticipate finding lower levels of climate change concern among right-wing and Christian individuals than left-wing and non-Christian individuals. I also expect educational attainment to have positive effects on liberals and negative effects on conservatives. By exploring these phenomena, I hope to contribute to securing humanity’s future in the face of narrowing opportunities to mitigate climate change.


Presented at the Spring 2023 Student Scholar Symposium at Chapman University.

Climate Change Paper Final.pdf (533 kB)
Climate Change Skepticism: The Effects of Partisanship, Christian Faith, and Educational Attainment on Climate Change Attitudes (Paper)