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Astin's Theory of Involvement

The ACE Advisory Board feels that we should include this Student Development theory on Student involvement because it really speaks to the purpose of the ACE program and why we feel it is beneficial for our students and their holistic development.


Astin's (1984) theory of involvement posits that students learn more the more they are involved in both the academic and social aspects of the collegiate experience. Students who are involved devote significant energy to academics, spend time on campus, participate actively in student organizations and activities, and interact often with faculty. On the other hand, uninvolved students neglect their studies, spend little time on campus, abstain from extracurricular activities, and rarely initiate contact with faculty or other students (Astin, 1984). Importantly, the most persuasive types of involvement are "academic involvement, involvement with faculty, and involvement with student peer groups" (Astin, 1996, p. 126). This theory is consistent with student-centered teaching approaches in that the student plays an integral role in determining her or his own degree of involvement in various educational activities.

Hunt, S.K. (2003). Encouraging student involvement: An approach to teaching communication. Communication Studies, Summer 2003. Retrieved From: on 10/4/11