ERIC Number: ED470922
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002-Jun-12
Student Involvement in the Community College: A Look at the Diversity and Value of Student Activities and Programs.
When compared with students at four-year campuses, community college students show lower levels of participation in campus organizations and attendance at campus-sponsored events. According to a study, 80% of the student body almost never attended a meeting of a club, organization, or student government group. Yet, research has shown that student involvement correlates with self-reported gain in personal and social development. This paper examines the value of student involvement in general, and traditional extracurricular activities in particular, at two-year campuses. It begins with a discussion on theories of student involvement and how they have been applied to four- and two-year institutions. The paper also discusses the level of participation in student activities and considers the barriers that hinder such participation, such as campus environment, campus resources, and student characteristics. Because traditional venues for student involvement also exist at community colleges, the author highlights the impact of residential living, athletics, clubs, honors programs, and student government on students' college experiences. The paper concludes with recommendations for improving student engagement, which include: (1) customizing extracurricular activities to fit the schedules and particular needs of older and part-time students; (2) reexamining the focus of student activities; and (3) implementing, supporting, and assessing student activities. (Contains 30 references.) (EMH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A