Social Belonging and College Retention: Results From a Quasi-Experimental Pilot Study

Additional Authors

Perkins, Jacob; Butler-Barnes, Sheretta T.; Walker, Thomas A., Jr. ;

Publication Date



Despite efforts by educators and policymakers to increase postsecondary education, many students never complete a degree. Attrition is particularly high among minority students. This article presents results from a new quasi-experimental pilot study testing a brief intervention that is grounded in social-belonging theory and designed to improve college retention. Analyses of data from a sample of 128 students (80% minority students) show that grade point averages were significantly higher among those exposed to the intervention. We also find that the reenrollment rate was higher, but the difference is not significant. The findings suggest useful insights as this research expands to target the intervention on underrepresented minority students.

Document Type



Child and Youth Development


Youth Development

Original Citation

Silver Wolf (Adelv unegv Waya), D. A. P., Perkins, J., Butler-Barnes, S. T., & Walker, T. A., Jr. (2017). Social belonging and college retention: Results from a quasi-experimental pilot study. Journal of College Student Development, 58(5), 777–782. doi:10.1353/csd.2017.0060


Increasing Student Retention in Forest Park Community College


social belonging, college enrollment, college degree attainment, United States, education