Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Hu, Xiaodan

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Counseling and Higher Education (CAHE)


This dissertation examines the perceptions of Latinx sense of belonging in a Midwest community college and how their academic and social experiences are impacted. Sense of belonging is meaningful to community college students because Latinx students are historically underserved in postsecondary education. The goal is to better understand the perceptions of Latinx students in a community college setting and to find out what factors impact sense of belonging. This study is significant because Latinx student retention outcomes in higher education are very low. The Latinx population is the fastest growing group in the United States. Therefore, providing support and an inclusive environment can foster a sense of belonging for Latinx student to be successful in higher education.This quantitative case study found perceptions of sense belonging in Latinx student’s academic environments, co-curricular activities, peer engagements, and campus environments. This research was guided by Hurtado & Carter’s (1997) conceptual framework on sense of belonging, which discusses how Latinx students think about how they see themselves in relation to groups to which they belong or would like to belong, which can influence how students may feel. The different social identities affects belonging which makes Latinx students to experience belonging in many ways within the institution.


116 pages




Northern Illinois University

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