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North Central Regional Educational Laborator (2011). Using student engagement to

improve literacy. Retrieved from

Middle and high school educators need both the skills required to teach adolescent
literacy and the knowledge of the elements of student engagement. Educators who teach
reading and writing skills without addressing student engagement are unlikely to yield
substantial improvements. As anyone who has spent time with middle and high school
students can attest, attempting to build the skills of disengaged adolescents is a futile
enterprise. Whether expressed as defiant noncompliance or passive checking out, the
student who refuses to learn will succeed in that effort.
Students who are motivated to learn, on the other hand, can succeed even in less-than-
optimal environments. Students who are engaged in learning are actively seeking
meaningful information that makes sense in their livesoften because they see an
immediate connection to real-life experiences. As defined by Blachowicz and Ogle
(2001), engagement has multiple facets including motivation and purpose.

Lewis, A. D. (2011, March). Life Satisfaction and Student Engagement in
Adolescents - Springer. Retrieved from

Situated within a positive psychology perspective, this study explored linkages between
adolescent students positive subjective well-being and their levels of engagement in
schooling. Specifically, using structural equation modeling techniques, we evaluated the
nature and directionality of longitudinal relationships between life satisfaction and
student engagement variables. It was hypothesized that adolescents life satisfaction and
student engagement variables would show bidirectional relationships. To test this
hypothesis, 779 students (53% female, 62% Caucasian) in a Southeastern US middle
school completed a measure of global life satisfaction and measures of cognitive,
emotional, and behavioral engagement at two time points, 5 months apart. A statistically
significant bidirectional relationship between life satisfaction and cognitive engagement
was found; however, non-significant relationships were found between life satisfaction
and emotional and behavioral student engagement. The findings provide important
evidence of the role of early adolescents life satisfaction in their engagement in
schooling during the important transition grades between elementary and high school.
The findings also help extend the positive psychology perspective to the relatively
neglected context of education.

Australian Council for Educational Research (2010). Student Engagement With
School. Retrieved from

Marsh (1992) has shown us that such high levels of engagement have positive benefits
across a wide variety of educationally relevant outcomes for students across a wide
variety of educationally relevant backgrounds (p. 559). In particular as a long-term
benefit, young people who participate in a variety of extracurricular activities are those
who are more likely to be involved in voluntary social and community activities as young
adults (Lindsay, 1984). Finn (1989) argued that schools need to actively promote
extracurricular participation, and recognise it as a means of promoting high levels of
student attachment to school. He points to deleterious school policies such as:
Policies that exclude the youngster from extracurricular participation, detentions that
dont involve school-related work, and suspensions, make it more difficult for the
individual to maintain regular contact with the school environment. For a student in this
situation, dropping out may seem to be a very small step (Finn, 1989, p. 131)

Jordan, L. P. (2013, May). Comparative Analysis of Student Engagement Between
Community Colleges. Retrieved from

First- and second-generation students. Among the subsets of students attending
community colleges, the first- and second-generation students have been the focus of
several student engagement studies over the last 10 years (Carnevale & Fry, 2000;
Terenzini, Springer, & Yeager, 1996, Pascarella & Nora, 1996; Kuh, Cruce, Shoup,
2008). Consistent in the data is the fact that these students do not remain in college, nor
do they perform as well academically, and do not graduate at the same rate as students
with college-educated parents. First-generation students are 15% less likely to persist to
the 3-year level than are second-generation students (Warburton, Bugarin, and Nunez,

Lebeau, J. (2012). Service Learning and Adult Students: Implications for Academic
Achievement and Student-Faculty I nteractions. Retrieved from

One challenge facing higher education today is the retention of degree-seeking adult
students over the age of 25. Adult students have different ways of learning and gaining
meaning from their college experience and often hold multiple roles that impact their
decisions to persist or depart. Institutions that can find ways to academically integrate
adult students and help them feel connected to their learning experience and to the
university are more successful in retaining adult students through graduation. Service
learning is a pedagogical practice that engages students in the learning experience
through reflection and contextualization in a community setting. Yet, little is known
about how service learning affects adult students. The purpose of this study is to gain a
better understanding of the effects of service learning on adult students. The study uses
an ex-post facto design to analyze archival data from the 2004, 2006, 2008, and 2010
administrations of the National Survey of Student Engagement at Washington State
University- Pullman. Results of a Factorial Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) suggest that
service learning participation alone does not significantly affect adult student GPA, but
that service learning participation does significantly affect adult student-faculty
interactions when age group, race group, and sex are not considered. More detailed
analyses suggest that service learning participation influences both adult student GPA
and adult student-faculty interactions when interactions between service learning
participation, age group, race group, and sex are considered. Despite small effect sizes
that limit interpretation of the findings, the study offers insight into adult student success
by offering empirical evidence to support positive outcomes of service learning as a
means of student engagement for adult students. The results are discussed in reference to
the ways in which student engagement is linked to adult student academic integration,
achievement, and success. The dissertation concludes with recommendations for adult
students, faculty, and administrators as well as directions for future research.
Lincoln, J. (2009). An I n-Depth Study of Student Engagement. Retrieved from

Many times, especially with our older students, we pressure them to be engaged in class
so that they can be prepared for their future. We ask them what they want to be and tell
them that hard work (being engaged in learning) will allow them to accomplish their
goals. After interviewing students in urban public high schools, Jackson (1999)
concluded that often our students have set high goals for themselves and believe that they
are hard workers, but are not fully aware of all of the work required in order for them to
achieve their goals. Even as elementary students, my fifth graders have career aspirations.
However, to tell them that they will succeed in life by memorizing facts and concepts and
paying attention in class is just not fair. In order to achieve their dreams of being doctors
and lawyers and cartoonists, they not only need to have an extreme desire to learn, but
they also need to be taught, in detail, what requirements will be necessary of them in
order to achieve such success. Students have a vague, short-term understanding of what
hard work looks like, but they lack a specific, long-term commitment to achieving their
goals. It is the responsibility of the teacher to promote such work ethic in the students. In
order to do so, a teacher must be extremely specific and in-depth when teaching students
to be persistent and engaged in their learning.

Parsons, J., & Taylor, L. (2011, March). Student Engagement: What do we know and
what should we do? Retrieved from
Authors and researchers throughout the literature consistently expressed a belief that
young people today are different! Contrary to some critics of todays youth and their
culture, different does not mean lazy, illiterate, unmotivated, or otherwise incapable of
learning, it just means they have different preferences for how (and what) they learn
(Oblinger & Oblinger, 2005). Students today are quickly bored with text and lecture
methods because of their immersion in technology and the exciting interaction,
engaging visuals, and instant gratification of the multimedia tools they use everyday to
communicate, entertain themselves, make plans, and answer questions when they are not
in a classroom (Brown, 2000; Oblinger & Oblinger, 2005).
They are interested in education; they are willing to learn; they are highly capable of
learning; and they are ready to learn (if not impatiently so). But unlike any cohort of
students before them, they clearly and confidently want to learn on their own terms. The
pedagogy and technologies of the past are not engaging todays students because these
students are miles ahead of us before we even begin.


Jordan, L. P. (2013, May). Comparative Analysis of Student Engagement Between
Community Colleges. Retrieved from

Student engagement studied at all levels. Because of the positive correlation
found in educational research between student engagement and student performance
overall, student engagement has been studied at all educational levels. At the community
college level, CCSSE is the most popular survey instrument to measure engagement
levels. Over 600,000 community college students have taken the survey over the last
seven years, and over 548 community colleges from 48 states, British Columbia and the
Marshall Islands have participated each year (McClenney, 2007).
Student engagement has been measured for the incoming freshmen student, as well as the
high school student. For the freshmen, to assess the specific and unique requirements of
the first-time community college student, college survey managers recently developed
and introduced the Survey of Entering Student Engagement (SENSE) which focuses on
identifying those areas that contribute to the high early failure rate among entering
college freshmen.
For high school, another instrument to measure their engagement levels was developed in
1997. Since such engagement sampling had proven useful at the college level, high
schools expressed an interest in developing an engagement survey for their population. In
1996, under the direction of Indiana State University, the High School Survey of Student
Engagement (HSSSE, 2008) was introduced as a measuring tool over 15 years ago.
During the 2004-2005 school year, over 170,000 9-12 grade students from 167 high
schools in 28 states completed the survey. Its focus was to identify those elements of the
high school education environment that contributed to increased
academic performance and learning. After the survey was completed, participating
schools received a customized report, along with comparative data with other schools
of similar size and programming (McCarthy & Kuh, 2006).

Grasgreen, A. (2014, November). NSSE 2013 measure student engagement and
learning outcomes | I nside Higher Ed. Retrieved from

First-year students and seniors averaged 14 and 15 hours per week, respectively,
preparing for class, with a little less than half that time spent on assigned reading. Results
varied by majors, though; at 18 hours, engineers spent the most time preparing for class,
while communications, media and public relations majors rounded out the group with 12
Only about 55 percent of freshmen and 61 percent of seniors said their courses
challenged them to do their best work. While 70 percent of senior health professions
majors felt highly challenged, communications majors (53 percent) felt the least

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