Spring 2018

Document Type

Master's Thesis (Open Access)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Teacher Education


Social skills are necessary abilities humans must obtain in order to get along with others and hold satisfying relationships. School connectedness is a value held by students that makes them feel accepted and valued as a member of the school community (CDC, 2009). The purpose of this quasi-experimental quantitative study was to examine if the introduction of a social skills curriculum could improve feelings of school connectedness in students with mild to moderate disabilities. Participants ranged from ages 14-18 and took part in various social skills activities over the course of a five-week period. The feelings of school connectedness were measured using the Psychological Sense of School Membership Scale (PSSM; Goodenow, 1993) with a pretest and posttest design. The results from the intervention group were compared to the control group who did not receive the intervention. It was hypothesized that the participation in social skills activities for three times a week for five weeks would increase high school students with mild to moderate disabilities feelings of school connectedness. Results indicated no significant differences between mean scores on the pre and post tests for either the treatment or control group. Further research should increase intervention time and continue the use of a consistent social skills curriculum to determine if school connectedness could be improved for students with mild to moderate disabilities.