Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)




This study was performed to explore the concept that physical, emotional, and spiritual symptoms of stress may be reduced by meditation and prayer. The participants were 32 undergraduate students from introductory psychology courses. Each individual participated in one of two conditions. The control group listened to an audio recording of relaxation and meditation guidelines, while the experimental group participated in a guided prayer for approximately the same amount of time. Both groups filled out a pre-test and post-test survey to determine their emotional stress level, as well as consent to allow a software program record their physiological functioning. The research team was interested in comparing the pre-test and post-test physical and emotional measures, and consider any significant difference between the two groups. Though the hypothesis that prayer would be more effective than meditation at reducing stress symptoms was not supported, the results of this study demonstrate that both meditation and prayer do significantly diminish stress. Future research should be conducted to continue exploring these findings.