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The impact of social contexts in schools : adolescents who are new to Canada and their sense of belonging Gagné, Monique Hélène


The purpose of this study was to investigate the ways in which school social context impacts sense of school belonging for adolescents who are new to Canada, in relation to those who are not new. More specifically, do perceptions of similarity to others at school, school diversity, and five types of social support predict higher levels of school belonging for participants. 733 adolescents (282 males and 451 females) from grades 5 to 12 were recruited from schools in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. Hierarchical Multiple Regression analyses were used and it was found that Perceived Similarity, Adult Support for School Help, Adult Support for Personal Help, and Peer Support for ‘Hanging Out’ contributed to the prediction of School Belonging for participants. Furthermore, moderator analysis indicated that newer generation Canadians had a stronger relationship between Adult Support for School Help and School Belonging. Similarly, newer generation Canadians showed a stronger relationship between Peer Support for Personal Help and School Belonging. The implications for adolescents who are newer to Canada and less new to Canada are discussed.

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