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A photovoice study of school belongingness among high school students in Norway

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Author list: Warne, Maria

Publication year: 2018

ISSN: 1239-9736

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/22423982.2017.1421369

URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/22423982.2017.1421369


Abstract

Although high school graduation is important for living conditions and health throughoutlife, many students do not complete. In Norway’s northern most county, Finnmark, up to 45% of students do not complete high school. Contrary to prior research that has primarilyfocused on causes for dropout, this study’s aim was to deepen understanding of factors thatsupport high school attendance. A strengths-based participatory approach using photovoiceaddressed attendance factors as perceived by seven participating students from one highschool in Finnmark. Qualitative content analysis of data generated through group dialogueabout participant-generated photos and individual interviews identified six factors importantfor students’ school attendance: a supportive school environment, a good learningenvironment, recuperation and recreation, family and friends, goals and ambitions, andplace attachment. Related aspects of a supportive environment and belongingness, where school staff made important contributions to promoting a positive environment, were essential.


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