Journal of College Student Retention: Research Theory & Practice
The psychological construct of hope, characterized by goal-directed thinking rooted in personal agency and the ability to develop pathways to achieve goals, has long been demonstrated to predict academic success. A sample of 994 undergraduates participated in this study to better understand the role of hope and on-campus social support in predicting students’ perceived ability to persist and succeed in college. Results demonstrated that on-campus support, particularly from teachers and professors, significantly predicted academic outcomes and hope. In addition, we found evidence of a support gap in which students from underrepresented ethnic minorities were far more likely to report that they had no support from educators on campus. Findings demonstrate the need for more research on the role of social support in developing hope in college students and highlight the value of encouraging meaningful relationships between students and faculty on campus.
© The Author(s) 2018