Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)



First Advisor

Dr. Robert Sattelmeyer - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Lisa Lilenfeld


The hypotheses of the current study are that (1) black women will be more spiritual and (2) will have more knowledge of the Holy Spirit than white women, and (3) spirituality will be negatively correlated with eating disorder symptomatology and body dissatisfaction. (4) African American women will have lower body dissatisfaction and (5) less eating disorder symptomatology than Caucasian women. It is predicted that (6) ethnicity will have more influence on eating disorder symptomatology and spirituality than current and ideal weight. (7) Current weight will have more influence on body dissatisfaction than ethnicity or ideal weight. Finally, (8) the ideal weight of black women will be higher than that of white women. Participants included 95 African American and Caucasian female college students. All the hypotheses were supported. Prospective research can discern whether racial differences in spirituality have causal influence on healthier body image held by many black women.