Community and Commitment: How Social Dynamics May Affect the Learning Process for High School Students

By Mervyn Wighting, Deanna Nisbet, Jing Liu and Patricia F. Martins.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This article presents a body of research centering on the measurement of the constructs of community and religious commitment and their relationship. The authors examined sense of community and religious commitment among 11th and 12th grade students attending Christian high schools in three geographical areas: Sao Paulo, Brazil; Massachusetts, Vermont and Virginia, USA. Instrumentation consisted of the Classroom and School Community Inventory (Rovai, Wighting, and Lucking, 2004) and the Religious Commitment Inventory-10 (Worthington et al (2003). Data analysis revealed a statistically significant correlation between the two contsructs. Results also indicated a significantly higher sense of community and religious commitment among females than among males. Implications for teachers and recommendations for further research are reported in the article.

Keywords: Community, Commitment, High School Students, School Community, Classroom Community, Religious Commitment

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 5, pp.29-36. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 587.519KB).

Dr. Mervyn Wighting

Associate Professor, School of Education, Regent University, Virginia Beach, VA, USA

Dr. Mervyn J. Wighting, originally from the south of England, has considerable experience in the education of people from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and has taught in a variety of institutions in the United Kingdom and in Europe. Dr. Wighting has lived in the United States for the past twelve years, where he has worked in public and independent schools as well as in higher education. He possesses a Virginia professional teaching license with endorsements as a principal and as a teacher in middle and secondary education. He has taught extensively through both face to face instruction and distance education, and is a strong advocate of lifelong learning.

Dr. Deanna Nisbet

Associate Professor, School of Education, Regent University, Virginia Beach, VA, USA

Dr. Deanna Nisbet is an Associate Professor and Director of the TESOL Program in the School of Education at Regent University. She has authored and co-authored numerous articles, and she regularly presents at international conferences such as the International Society for Language Studies Conference and the International Reading Association Conference. Her areas of expertise and research include first and second language acquisition, literacy for second language learners, classroom community, and research related to learning strategies and proficiency of Chinese students of English as a second or foreign language. Dr. Nisbet developed and presently oversees the Regent TESOL program, as well as partnerships with school districts in the Hampton Roads, VA area, for the training of current and prospective ESL teachers and tutors.

Dr. Jing Liu

Teacher of Chinese, World Languages, Northfield Mount Hermon School, USA

Jing Liu is a teacher of Chinese at Northfield Mount Hermon School (Massachusetts, USA). Her research interests include learner autonomy in language learning, language learning strategies, and sense of community.

Dr. Patricia F. Martins

Teacher, Science, Escola do Futoro, Brazil

Dr. Patricia F. Martins is a science teacher for middle and high school students in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

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