Student engagement in a residential college.
Student engagement is highly valued in institutions of higher learning because of its effects on other areas of student experiences. In efforts to increase engagement, many institutions have implemented measures such as living-learning programs, which marry the residential experience with an academic discipline or focus. Numerous institutions have also created systems of residential colleges, based on the ancient structure at Cambridge University and Oxford University. Many of these residential colleges employ systems to quantitatively measure and record student participation via “points”. Administrators use these “points” records to determine whether a resident is adequately involved in the residential community. However, little research, if any, has been done on the effects of having a points system. Points allow for a quantitative measurement of involvement beyond self-reports, and this thesis takes advantage of this fact to research the effects of student experiences and characteristics on actual levels of engagement in a residential college.