Publication Date

Fall 2013

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Counselor Education


The purpose of this study is to understand the student experience of in school and/or out of school suspension. It was a qualitative phenomenological study. The researcher individually interviewed high school students who have had experience with suspension. Each interview was audio-recorded in order for transcriptions to be completed for data to be analyzed and coded. Inquiries were made to help the researcher understand what the experiences of students were, the overall impact of suspension in students’ lives, what motivated their behaviors, and the experience of the disciplinary process at the school. A number of patterns emerged within the responses. A theme that emerged across the interviews was the importance of students feeling engaged in the classroom. Some discrepancies were identified as well, including the impact that suspension has on a student’s life. Based on the student responses, recommendations were made to change the suspension program.