Understanding undergraduate student engagement: motivations and experiences




Chan, Mannix

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An undergraduate student’s level of engagement in non-academic activities has demonstrated to be a robust predictor of their success in higher education. Previous research indicates positive outcomes associated with student engagement including social benefits and sense of community gained by the students. Little is known about what motivates millennial students to join these activities and what students gain through these types of experiences. This study explores motivations and experiences of 11 undergraduate millennial students involved with student-run organizations at the University Of Victoria. The findings of the study suggest that today’s students are motivated to become engaged in non-academic activities due to professional and social benefits, encouragement from others, and personal interests. Additionally, through their participation, students have a better experience in university and learn about ideas of leadership and leadership skills. The findings from this study provide insight on how universities can create programs and policies to foster student engagement and student success.



Leadership, Millennials, Higher Education, Student Motivation, Student Engagement, Student Involvement, Extracurricular Activities, Student Experience, Non-academic learning, Student Success