Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

MA Higher Education


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Tinnin, Andrew

Committee Member 1

McCombs, Tyrone

Committee Member 2

Walpole, MaryBeth


international students, marginality, mattering


Rowan University--Foreign students


Higher Education


This study explores the theory of mattering first developed by Rosenberg and McCullough (1981) that was later adapted to a higher education setting by Schlossberg (1989) and applies it to an international student context. More specifically, this study aims to measure the degree to which international students feel as though they matter to Rowan University across six subscales: general college mattering, mattering versus marginality, mattering to counselors, mattering to instructors, mattering to students, and perception of value.

Using the College Mattering Inventory (CMI) instrument developed by Tovar, Simon, and Lee (2008), 132 international students at Rowan University were surveyed on their perception of mattering. Forty-five students responded, yielding a response rate of 34%. Tentative findings suggest that international students generally feel a relatively high level of mattering. Comparisons with undergraduate, residential students in a previous study (McGuire 2012) indicate that internationals actually had higher levels of mattering across four of the six subscales. However, they scored lower in the mattering to students and general college mattering subscales and on specific questions related to loneliness in the mattering versus marginality subscale. Suggestions for further practice related to these areas are recommended.