Pontifical Foundation Gravissimum Educationis

Synod 2018 «Young people, the faith and vocational discernment». A survey of young people and their choices.

In view of the next Synod, that is scheduled to take place in Rome in October 2018, the Congregation for Catholic Education – together with the Gravissimum Educationis Foundation - is conducting a survey in order to better understand the issues facing our youth today. This survey also aims at providing Synod Fathers with scientific data, which can become useful food for thought during their discussions with and on young people. This initiative will foster their dialogue and also provide the Congregation for Catholic Education with recent and accurate data on education (schools and universities), which will be discussed during the Synod. Lastly, the collected information will be extremely useful to guide the Congregation’s efforts over the next few years, aimed, among others, at preparing a document on university pastoral care.

The study will focus on the following main subjects, which are also reflected in the survey’s different sections: identity (the place for discernment), values and relationships (the place for proximity), relations with the world and its institutions (the place for solidarity). These main subjects are crisscrossed by as many topics that will be addressed in the study: the digital world (social networks), religion and spirituality, and innovation, which play a prominent role in young people’s lives.

Survey recipients – who will have to reply personally to an online questionnaire under supervision – are young people aged between 16 and 29. As a rule, they would be attending the last years of secondary school, the first two university cycles or just starting out on their careers.

The sample that was identified by the group coordinating the survey is structured as follows: 30 Catholic universities, 30 Catholic schools, 10 non-Christian and 10 lay institutions. Participating institutions were selected based on a number of criteria, such as continental representativeness, geographical grouping, institutional structure, disciplinary and local (urban/rural) diversity. The Giuseppe Toniolo Institute, Scholas Occurrentes Foundation and Focolare Movement are also taking part in this project, together with academic experts who will be contributing to the survey.

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