Disha Rupayana, Ph.D. (2010)

Major Professor:

Dr. Clive Fullagar

Title and Institution:

Research Scientist, Skillsurvey, Inc.


Developing SAENS: Development and validation of a Student Academic ENgagement Scale (SAENS)


Student engagement has become an important way of assessing student outcomes for college and is used to provide information to accreditation agencies, for internal accountability as well as to assess impact of college on students. However, current measures of student engagement do not assess the core process underlying student engagement, instead focusing on antecedents and consequences of engagement. The current research addressed this gap by first developing a new measure of student engagement called SAENS (Student Academic ENgagement Scale), which is strongly grounded in theory derived from the work engagement literature. Two dimensions of engagement were found: enjoyment and effort. A second study validated this measure by forming a nomological net of relationships with other variables and testing these antecedents and consequences of engagement. Results indicated that engagement effort is strongly related to student grades for their classes and the dimension of enjoyment is related to the teaching style of collaborative learning. However, engagement was not related to students' levels of critical thinking.