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Students' sense of belonging in technical/vocational schools versus academic schools: the mediating role of faculty trust in students

Mieke Van Houtte UGent and Dimitri Van Maele UGent (2012) TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD. 114(7). p.1-36
abstract
Background: Since the late 1960s, research has demonstrated repeatedly that students in lower tracks achieve less as they develop an antischool culture to overcome the status deprivation resulting from being in a lower track. In quantitative large-scale research, this antischool culture is usually assessed using poor academic attitudes or study disengagement because antischool norms disengage students from the learning process. The extent to which students in different tracks feel embedded in their school communities—their sense of school belonging—has rarely been examined, although academic engagement and sense of belonging are related to each other and to achievement. Objective: This article examines students’ sense of belonging in secondary schools that offer different tracks, and the role played by the faculty’s trust in the students. Participants: The study is based on data from 3,475 students and 754 teachers in 28 technical/vocational schools and 3,376 students and 461 teachers in 22 academic schools in Flanders, the northern, Dutch-speaking part of Belgium. Research Design: Use is made of (stepwise) multilevel analyses (HLM6). Results: The analyses show that students in technical/vocational schools have a significant lower sense of belonging than students in academic schools. This association disappears if we take into account faculty trust in students. The association between school type and perceived teacher support, a subdimension of the sense of belonging, is not mediated by faculty trust, but is due to the lower GPA of students in technical/vocational schools. Conclusions: The results indicate that teachers play a crucial role in the divergent nature of students’ social integration across different types of schools. In terms of strengthening students’ connectedness to a technical/vocational school environment, our results indicate that strengthening teachers’ level of trust in students could be crucial.
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
year
type
journalArticle (original)
publication status
published
subject
keyword
DIFFERENTIATION-POLARIZATION THEORY, SECONDARY-SCHOOLS, PSYCHOLOGICAL CLIMATE, PERCEPTIONS, TRACKING, TEACHERS, ENVIRONMENT, ATTACHMENT, CLASSROOM, CONNECTEDNESS
journal title
TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD
Teach. Coll. Rec.
volume
114
issue
7
article_number
070301
pages
1 - 36
Web of Science type
Article
Web of Science id
000308591100001
JCR category
EDUCATION & EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH
JCR impact factor
0.896 (2012)
JCR rank
79/215 (2012)
JCR quartile
2 (2012)
ISSN
0161-4681
language
English
UGent publication?
yes
classification
A1
copyright statement
I have transferred the copyright for this publication to the publisher
id
2963464
handle
http://hdl.handle.net/1854/LU-2963464
date created
2012-07-19 15:18:18
date last changed
2015-06-17 10:11:58
@article{2963464,
  abstract     = {Background: Since the late 1960s, research has demonstrated repeatedly that students in lower tracks achieve less as they develop an antischool culture to overcome the status deprivation resulting from being in a lower track. In quantitative large-scale research, this antischool culture is usually assessed using poor academic attitudes or study disengagement because antischool norms disengage students from the learning process. The extent to which students in different tracks feel embedded in their school communities---their sense of school belonging---has rarely been examined, although academic engagement and sense of belonging are related to each other and to achievement. Objective: This article examines students{\textquoteright} sense of belonging in secondary schools that offer different tracks, and the role played by the faculty{\textquoteright}s trust in the students. Participants: The study is based on data from 3,475 students and 754 teachers in 28 technical/vocational schools and 3,376 students and 461 teachers in 22 academic schools in Flanders, the northern, Dutch-speaking part of Belgium. Research Design: Use is made of (stepwise) multilevel analyses (HLM6). Results: The analyses show that students in technical/vocational schools have a significant lower sense of belonging than students in academic schools. This association disappears if we take into account faculty trust in students. The association between school type and perceived teacher support, a subdimension of the sense of belonging, is not mediated by faculty trust, but is due to the lower GPA of students in technical/vocational schools. Conclusions: The results indicate that teachers play a crucial role in the divergent nature of students{\textquoteright} social integration across different types of schools. In terms of strengthening students{\textquoteright} connectedness to a technical/vocational school environment, our results indicate that strengthening teachers{\textquoteright} level of trust in students could be crucial.},
  articleno    = {070301},
  author       = {Van Houtte, Mieke and Van Maele, Dimitri},
  issn         = {0161-4681},
  journal      = {TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD},
  keyword      = {DIFFERENTIATION-POLARIZATION THEORY,SECONDARY-SCHOOLS,PSYCHOLOGICAL CLIMATE,PERCEPTIONS,TRACKING,TEACHERS,ENVIRONMENT,ATTACHMENT,CLASSROOM,CONNECTEDNESS},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {7},
  pages        = {070301:1--070301:36},
  title        = {Students' sense of belonging in technical/vocational schools versus academic schools: the mediating role of faculty trust in students},
  volume       = {114},
  year         = {2012},
}

Chicago
Van Houtte, Mieke, and Dimitri Van Maele. 2012. “Students’ Sense of Belonging in Technical/vocational Schools Versus Academic Schools: The Mediating Role of Faculty Trust in Students.” Teachers College Record 114 (7): 1–36.
APA
Van Houtte, M., & Van Maele, D. (2012). Students’ sense of belonging in technical/vocational schools versus academic schools: the mediating role of faculty trust in students. TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD, 114(7), 1–36.
Vancouver
1.
Van Houtte M, Van Maele D. Students’ sense of belonging in technical/vocational schools versus academic schools: the mediating role of faculty trust in students. TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD. 2012;114(7):1–36.
MLA
Van Houtte, Mieke, and Dimitri Van Maele. “Students’ Sense of Belonging in Technical/vocational Schools Versus Academic Schools: The Mediating Role of Faculty Trust in Students.” TEACHERS COLLEGE RECORD 114.7 (2012): 1–36. Print.