Date of Graduation


Document Type



The classroom is the center of students' formal educational experience. It is often the one place students have an opportunity to interact with faculty. This dissertation explored the issue of student involvement both inside and outside of the college classroom. First, this study qualitatively examined in-class involvement from the students' perspective. Based on students' descriptions of their perceptions of their involvement/noninvolvement, and their perceptions of other students' involvement/noninvolvement, six themes (e.g., Active Involvement) emerged for in-class involvement and eight themes (e.g., Student Passivity) for in-class noninvolvement. Second, this study quantitatively examined factors (i.e., student characteristics, perceived instructor communication strategies, and classroom connectedness) that lead to student involvement inside and outside of the college classroom. Overall, student-to-student connectedness played a pivotal role in student involvement. Students who perceived their classroom peer climate as supportive and connected were more willing to talk in class and also more likely to engage in class preparedness.