Students' perception of the design of common space and its role in sense of community and belonging Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/2j62s784h

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  • Students are now required to live a minimum of their freshman year in the residence halls. This time spent in the residence halls is a time of transition; living on their own, for what may be the first time for many, can be a struggle. Students are adjusting to a new way of life. These residence halls can have a significant influence on students' perception of sense of community. If positive, this may help increase students retention rate after freshman year. It is important to understand this transition, what aids in the transition, and how the physical environment plays a part in this transition as to create a more positive experience for students to come and stay. The purpose of this study was to explore university dormitory residents' perceptions of common areas, and the role of these common areas in their sense of community and belonging. Sense of community is a strong indicator of a successful transition. This study addressed four research questions: Question #1: What are student's general perceptions of common areas? Question #2: How do students use the common space? Question #3: What are students' perceptions of the function and aesthetics design of the common area? Question #4: How do students’ use this space to socialize with others? The method used in this study consisted of semi-structured interviews conducted by the student researcher. The participants were recruited through an email listserv as well as in-person convenience sampling. These interviews were conducted in a private room, audio recorded and transcribed for analysis. The data were coded for significant themes. These themes focused on the use of the common space; the aesthetics as well as the students' overall perception of their transition. We see a connection with the physical environment and the students place attachment in terms of experiences shared with other students, regardless of these experiences' being in work or social situations. This membership is how we see the sense of community develop. The students contributed their successful transition to knowing not only the physical environment as well as in relationships formed on campus. This information may aid student housing personnel as they work with students as well as students time on campus, specifically, the students transitioning to campus living. The data may be used in developing student evaluations as well as updates on the residence hall furnishing and equipment. Understanding more about the student experience and their perception of this experience may aid in creating a better student experience and thus result in higher retention rates.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Megan Knight (knightm@oregonstate.edu) on 2015-09-18T23:05:44Z No. of bitstreams: 1 KnightMeganM2015.pdf: 761359 bytes, checksum: f35913f6ce8224b697e5482db9450e80 (MD5)
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Laura Wilson(laura.wilson@oregonstate.edu) on 2015-09-25T17:12:29Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 KnightMeganM2015.pdf: 761359 bytes, checksum: f35913f6ce8224b697e5482db9450e80 (MD5)
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