Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


High school dropouts -- Middle West -- Prevention; High school students -- Middle West -- Attitudes; Social participation; Middle West; Academic theses;


Researchers have worked for years to decrease rates of student dropout by identifying associated factors, and developing strategies to increase school success. Despite these efforts, dropout is a complicated phenomenon, making it difficult to effectively support students. There is a body of literature concerning the connection between students' sense of belonging and its relationship to dropout. This literature is reviewed in light of the effect teachers, parents, peers, and personal characteristics have on belonging and dropout. A second body of research concerning how the physical environment of schools as behavior settings affects student outcomes is also discussed. A survey was conducted with high school students to explore how these two domains can be brought together to explain student belonging and high school dropout. The research questions included (1) what factors contribute to students' feelings of connectedness and belonging to their school? (2) how does the school's social and physical environment influence students' sense of belonging?

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Specialist in Education


Department of Educational Psychology and Foundations

First Advisor

Kimberly Knesting


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1 PDF file (61 leaves)



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