The topic of the conference discusses how worldviews impact people’s motivation to learn, how worldviews guide people's life choices and future orientation, and how worldviews and religions help people to find meaning and purpose in life.


Due growing interest submission time has been extended till January 31, 2018:


Please notice: In order to to submit for the SIG 19 Conference, you need an active EARLI account. If you don’t yet have any EARLI account, you can create one free of charge here:


First Call has been announced in October 2017.  More information:

Second Call has been announced in December 2017.


Instructions for submissions

The sixth biennial conference of the European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction EARLI, Special Interest Group 19: Religious and Spiritual Education provides an international academic forum for presenting and discussing latest research findings on religious and spiritual education taking place in different societal and educational settings and across age groups. The EARLI SIG 19 is addressing both junior and senior scholars to present their work.

The topic of the conference discusses how worldviews impact people’s motivation to learn, how worldviews guide people's life choices and future orientation, and how worldviews and religions help people to find meaning and purpose in life. The conference includes keynote addresses from Professor Alyssa Bryant Rockenbach (North Carolina State University, USA), Associate Professor Jenny Berglund (Södertörn University, Sweden), Professor Kirsi Tirri (University of Helsinki, Finland) and Professor Ulrich Riegel (University of Siegen, Germany).

As a Special Interest Group, we have a strong tradition of publishing a selection of the biennial conference papers in high quality, peer-reviewed academic publications. These have included Special Issues in the Journal of Empirical Theology (2009), the Journal of Beliefs and Values (2014), and the Journal of Religious education (2015, 2016a, 2016b), as well as edited volumes in the Research on Religious and Spiritual Education series published by Waxmann (2012, 2017a, 2017b). We intend to publish a selection of papers either as a Special Issue and/or an edited volume also following the 2018 conference.



We welcome proposals that address some of the thematic questions presented above or other issues related to our conference theme. Theoretical and empirical inquiries that challenge methodological boundaries and explore non-traditional approaches to religious and spiritual education are particularly welcome. We also encourage young researchers to submit proposals, and welcome not only presentations of finished research projects but also papers or posters presenting ongoing research and preliminary results.

We accept paper presentations and posters, as well as roundtable sessions which can be suggested for being co-organized by the conference participants working on a particular theme. Each presentation format provides specific opportunities:

(a) Paper format provides the opportunity for the author(s) to communicate personal empirical and theoretical enquiry. Papers are organized into thematic sessions.

(b) Poster format makes it feasible to combine a visual presentation of data and a more informal discussion on the study. The posters are displayed in area hall where each presenter has some 5 minutes for introducing their work, followed by informal conversations on that. Poster format is encouraged for on-going, explorative research work and preliminary results. It is also a good format for young researchers to start with one’s first conference presentation.

(c) Roundtable format provides an opportunity for interaction with several researchers working on related research problems or a theme; the emphasis here is on discussion and linkages between different studies and projects. In the Roundtable format, the organizer(s) of the session can invite 3-5 scholars, ideally from different research groups or institutions, for discussing a specific contemporary topic related to the Religious and Spiritual Education research. This working format is well suited for senior researchers who would like to discuss their projects with others.

For submissions you will need to prepare:

An abstract of 200-250 words maximum (excluding references) submission December 1st  - December 15th, informing about:

- Mention your preference for a paper or a poster presentation, or a particular roundtable session.

- Include your research questions and objectives,

- Theoretical framework and the referred literature,

- Research design (research approach, methods and tools for collecting and analyzing data) for empirical research or data sources, evidences and materials for others research projects,

- Findings of the study.

We ask you to target the conference theme ‘Worldviews in creating meaning and purpose for learning’. This will also make it easier for you to offer your paper into our similarly themed publication later on (i.e., a journal Special Issue, or an also reviewed edited volume). Abstracts are to be downloaded to the electronic submission system via the conference web pages


Contributors will be informed about the results of the abstract review process January 15st.

After having received the results of the review, you are asked to submit an extended summary of your accepted abstract (maximum 1000 words excluding references) by April 30th, 2018.


Interested in proposing a manuscript to a Special Issue?

EARLI SIG 19 has had discussions about special issues in refereed international journals and possibly a book. The authors are asked whether they have interest in having their original full proposals being evaluated for suitability for publishing via this route. The evaluation will be made on the basis of the full proposal (deadline 30.4.2018). The estimated publication will be in 2019. Full articles will be expected in October-November 2018. We will give more information about the procedure and the concrete options in due course. In principle, the journal publication option applies only to manuscripts based on paper proposals. The final decision on publication will be made on the basis of interest and quality of proposals.



December 1st  - December 15th     Proposal submission (first call)

January 15st     Review results and decisions (first call)


December 16th - Janurary 31st     Extended proposal submission (second call)

February 15th     Review results and decisions (second call)


February 28th     Early bird registration fee

April 30th     Conference registration ends

April 30th     Deadline for full papers and contributions

June 11-13th     EARLI SIG 19 conference in Joensuu


You and your colleagues and students are warmly welcome to join us in Joensuu!