Proceedings of The 4th World Conference on Research in Teaching and Education
Help us make the world a better place! Fostering civic engagement and well-being through open classroom climates
Oana Dănilă and Alexandra Maftei
The present study investigated the links between personal and school-based associated factors and civic engagement. Our sample consisted of 348 early and middle adolescents (age range: 916, M=12.68, SD=1.57, 56% male). All participants were students in three different schools from the north-eastern part of Romania. We explored the associations between adolescents’ perceived civic efficacy and aspirations to contribute to their community and well-being, the perception of school climate as being open for discussion, and social media engagement. Results indicate significant and negative associations between participants’ age and well-being, suggesting that older participants reported lower scores on engagement, perseverance, optimism, connectedness, and happiness. Our data also indicated that higher levels of civic efficacy were reported by younger participants, who use social media more and generally report a safer and more positive school climate. We discuss our results concerning their importance within the educational system and socially based interventions in the context of a historical period when civic engagement is critical to address a global sanitary crisis properly, i.e., Covid-19.
keywords: civic engagement, adolescents, school climate, well-being, social media.