Date of Award

Spring 5-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Anna Abdou

Second Advisor

Dr. Kelly Kennedy

Third Advisor

Dr. John Brady


As diversity grows in the United States, schools are tasked with supporting diverse students. This dissertation explored the concept of social and psychological inclusion as a potential protective factor for marginalized students. It examined the variables of inclusion, marginalized group membership, and student outcomes using the California Healthy Kids Survey administered to secondary students. Marginalized group membership included examining race, ethnicity, and the presence of bullying for a disability. Student outcomes included self-reported grades and attendance. This study revealed that the degree of inclusion affected students’ self-reported grades and attendance, with students reporting higher grades and attendance with higher degrees of inclusion. Furthermore, multinomial logistic regression results showed statistically significant main effects of inclusion and marginalized group membership on student self-reported grades and attendance. The largest effect sizes were evident in models that examined inclusion, marginalized group membership, and grades with medium to large effects. Small effects were evident in the models that examined inclusion, marginalized group membership, and attendance. Inclusion was a stronger predictor of student outcomes than marginalized group membership in all models. Given that grades are significant in accessing opportunities beyond high school and attendance is significant in school funding, educators and researchers are uniquely invested in these student outcomes, which they can improve by facilitating social and psychological inclusion for marginalized students.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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