Year of Publication

2012

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Agriculture

Department

Community and Leadership Development

First Advisor

Dr. Lori Garkovich

Abstract

Political engagement has an established body of research. However, one key area that has not been investigated in the field is the relationship between political engagement and type of community lived in. This study explores this relationship between type of community, past political engagement, perceptions of community leaders, attitude about political engagement, and socieodemographic characteristics. A conceptual model was developed based on existing literature. Utilizing a statewide survey conducted in 2009 that yielded 1,154 respondents with a response rate of 30.2% was used to explore these relationships. Using statistical procedures that test correlation were utilized to investigate the relationship between the key study variables. In addition, a regression model was created to be able to predict an individual’s political engagement. The result concluded that type of community does not significantly play a role in determining an individual’s political engagement. However other insights were revealed that showcase the complexity of political engagement and raise other questions about the role an individual’s attitude towards political engagement, and perception of community leaders affects their political engagement.

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