The experiences of first-year African American males in a living learning community attending a historically black college and university: implications for retention

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Paul Brandon Johnson (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Charles Gause

Abstract: The purpose of this case study was to investigate the experiences of first-year African American males who participated in a Living Learning Community (LLC) while attending a Historically Black College and University (HBCU), to understand how, if at all, the program had any impact on the participants’ retention. The conceptual framework for this study was derived from the student integration model (Tinto, 1993). Research was conducted on the campus of a mid-sized HBCU located in the southeastern region of the United States. Over a period of four weeks, data were collected from students participating in the LLC. Data collection methods included 12 in-depth interviews, 12 residence hall observations, 4 classroom observations, and information from reports obtained from the institution. Themes and subject categories from the interviews and observations were determined using a combination of In Vivo (Creswell, 2013; Saldana, 2013) and open coding (Corbin & Strauss, 2007). Findings from the case study showed students in the LLC perceived they experienced and/or received several academic benefits associated with their participation, such as knowledge and use of academic support services including academic advising, tutorial services, and supplemental instruction. The students also perceived they experienced more social connectivity with their fellow LLC members and participated in more social events compared to those not in the LLC. Additionally, the participants commented the program made it easier for them to make friends, which facilitated a smoother transition to college. Students also directly associated their LLC participation with increasing their likelihood of being retained. Based on these findings, a foundation for understanding how LLCs on HBCU campuses can positively impact first-year African American males will be established. The conclusions drawn from the study will advise higher education practitioners on methods to enhance outcomes for African American male students on HBCU campuses using LLC programming.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
African American male, Black male, First-year student retention, Living Learning Community, Minority male retention, Residential Learning Community
African American universities and colleges
African American men $x Education (Higher)
African American male college students
College dropouts $x Prevention
Residential colleges
College freshmen

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