Skip to main content

Danforth Study of Campus Ministries Records

Call Number: RG 62

Scope and Contents

Volume I is the report of the director of the Danforth Study on the process of gathering data through the administration of the survey instrument, presentation and analysis of the data, and a discussion of the resulting implications. Volume II contains working and technical papers by scholars, ministers, university and church administrators, students and others who participated in the study.

The materials are compiled according to the chapters in each volume, with papers arranged in seven sub-categories within each chapter:

1) Drafts of chapter

2) Final copy of chapter

3) Related papers: including reports, surveys, dissertations, working papers, questionnaires, research proposals, etc. which have not been published.

4) Clippings and articles: including newspaper and periodical clippings, single published articles and reprints.

5) Printed materials: including brochures and descriptive items, brochures, catalogues, complete publications, conference materials, invitations, newsletters and non-substantive items.

6) Notes: including sections of papers with notations and handwritten items.

7) Correspondence: letters and memoranda.

Following the Bibliography of Volume I, a section entitled "Miscellaneous" was added to accommodate those materials that pertain to the volume in general, having been cited in several of its chapters. Similarly, six categories were created following Volume II to accommodate materials of a more specific nature that pertain to the entire study:

1) Analysis of data: including both raw and analyzed data from the administered questionnaires.

2) Case studies: including personal interviews and papers on individuals and specific groups.

3) Related institutions and organizations: including colleges and universities that participated in the study and organizations that contributed pertinent information.

4) Related materials: including materials that relate generally to the study, but are not specifically cited.

5) Related studies: including studies conducted prior to the Danforth study, the results of which are cited by Underwood, and studies which arose from Underwood's research.

6) Underwood Articles: including papers, reports and articles by Kenneth Underwood.

The collection serves as a rich source of primary material for research in the area of ministry in higher education.


  • 1962-1966


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.


  1. I. Volume I - Report of the Director
  2. II. Volume II - Working and Technical Papers
  3. III. Data and Related Material


30 Linear Feet (71 boxes)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


These archives constitute the data, drafts, reports, and related material that resulted in the two volume report of the Danforth Study of Campus Ministries, The Church, the University, and Social Policy, which was published by Wesleyan University Press in 1969. The Danforth Study of Campus Ministries, sponsored by the Danforth Foundation beginning in 1963, was directed by Kenneth Underwood. Through questionnaires, studies, and analysis, the project documented the state of religious awareness and commitment on American university and college campuses.

Biographical / Historical

During the 1960s, a growing apathy toward Christianity was apparent in American society, particularly among college and university students. This attitude was evidenced by changing religious awareness and commitment, moral values, social action and political thought.

In view of these crucial changes and the resulting "daily multiform contradictions and discontinuities in our thought and action as we try to live with the vestiges of our traditional faith in a modern, technical, rapidly changing, mass society," the Danforth Foundation sponsored a study beginning in 1963 which sought to create an awareness of the issues and present resulting implications.

Kenneth Underwood, a faculty member of Wesleyan University and formerly of Yale Divinity School, was appointed as director of the study. Through questionnaires administered to a sample group of campus and parish ministers and university students, sufficient data was gathered for analysis, serving as the representative opinions of this specific population of American society.

In 1969, Wesleyan University Press published two volumes containing the basic reports and papers of the Danforth study. The publication of these volumes was never realized by Dr. Underwood due to his death from cancer in 1968 at age fifty.

Guide to the Danforth Study of Campus Ministries Records
Compiled by Joan R. Duffy
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared According To Local Divinity Library Descriptive Practices
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Yale Divinity Library Repository

409 Prospect Street
New Haven CT 06511 US
(203) 432-5301

Opening Hours