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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26434

Title: Student and Teacher Perceptions of Student Engagement
Authors: Sutherland, Stephanie
Advisor: Earl, Lorna
Department: Theory and Policy Studies in Education
Keywords: student engagement
concept mapping
Issue Date: 1-Mar-2011
Abstract: This study will explore student engagement as a multidimensional construct through a systematic comparative study from the views of students and teachers. While the construct of engagement holds promise for addressing declining motivation and achievement of adolescent students, the challenges associated with measuring a multi-faceted construct suggest the need for integrative research methodologies. This study will utilize concept mapping methods in two urban secondary schools. This methodology holds the potential to provide the tools for structured ‘meaning making’ between participants (students and teachers). This capacity to ‘think together’ is promoted through intentionally structured (i.e., concept mapping processes) practice of discourse. As a direct result of this approach, data revealed the degree of convergence and divergence in student and teacher definitions of student engagement. Areas of student/teacher convergence included themes addressing ‘diversity/belonging’, ‘student-teacher interaction’, and ‘variety in school policy/structure’. Areas of divergence included, ‘aspects of pedagogy’, ‘students at the centre’, and ‘professional educators’. In framing student engagement as a multidimensional construct, this study was able to uncover complex nuances. For example, closer examination of the student data revealed a nested and multi-faceted relationship to their sense of engagement. Students most strongly associated engagement to their sense of belonging at school. In turn, this sense of belonging was directly impacted by their relationships with peers, and this connection was viewed to directly affect on motivation (and subsequent achievement). Future research is needed so as to delve deeper into the nature of social connections among teachers-students, and students-students as an approach to untangle and better understand the multidimensionality of factors at play.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26434
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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