School of Education
Doctor of Education (EdD)
cumulative risk, physical activity, undergraduate institutional commitment
Education | Educational Leadership | Higher Education | Higher Education Administration
Kilbourne, Brianne, "Moderate to Vigorous Physical Activity as a Protective Factor in the Context of Risk: A Moderator Model Predicting Institutional Commitment" (2014). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 875.
The purpose of this quantitative, non-experimental correlational study was to determine if cumulative risk is associated with undergraduate student institutional commitment. Additionally, moderate to vigorous physical activity was investigated as a moderator of the association between cumulative risk and institutional commitment, specifically serving as a protective factor for students experiencing high levels of cumulative risk factors. Data were collected through anonymous, online surveys from a convenience sample of undergraduate students enrolled at a large, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)-accredited, 4-year private university located in Virginia. The statistical program, SPSS 22.0 (2013) was used to analyze the descriptive analysis and test the assumptions. Hierarchical multiple regression was used to statistically analyze the association between: (a) cumulative risk and institutional commitment, (b) moderate to vigorous physical activity and institutional commitment, and (c) the interaction between cumulative risk and physical activity and institutional commitment. Hypothesis 1 was supported by the findings, which suggested that cumulative risk was negatively associated with institutional commitment. Hypotheses 2 and 3 were rejected, since moderate to vigorous physical activity was not found to be significantly associated with institutional commitment. Additionally, moderate to vigorous physical activity did not moderate the association between cumulative risk and institutional commitment. The findings from this study can be used to inform student retention research by providing evidence of a predictive association between cumulative risk and institutional commitment (i.e., risk of departure). While moderate to vigorous physical activity was not found to moderate the association between cumulative risk and institutional commitment, future researchers should investigate potential moderators.