Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. Higher Education


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Tinnin, Andrew

Committee Member 1

McCombs, Tyrone

Committee Member 2

Walpole, MaryBeth


College, Emotional Support Animal, ESA, Housing, Service Animal, University


Emotional support animals


Higher Education


This is a study of student interactions and opinions regarding emotional support animals (ESAs) or service animals in on-campus residential housing. Specifically, this study was designed to garner the opinions of residential students who live in close proximity to an ESA or service animal but do not have one of their own, essentially the roommates of an approved animal owner. An online survey was distributed to students at Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ during the 2019-2020 academic year. All participants were enrolled students who resided in on-campus housing in close proximity to an ESA or service animal.

The results of the study were mixed. The vast majority of participants reported having a positive interaction with an animal in their residence hall, but only about half of the group reported that an ESA was beneficial to their student experience. Having an allergy or fear of certain animals seemed to correlate to a more negative experience for students, but the margin was slim. Overwhelmingly, regardless of a negative or positive experience, 100% of participants reported that there should be some level of university approved animals in on-campus residence halls. This shows that despite individual negative experiences that they may have experienced, students feel that ESAs or service animals are important to those who need them.