Date of Award

Summer 8-16-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Organizational Leadership

First Advisor

Doug DeVore

Second Advisor

Alan Enomoto

Third Advisor

Jasmine Ruys


Purpose: The purpose of this mixed methods study was to explore and describe the communication technologies that community college students perceive are effective ways to receive information from their college. A secondary purpose was to explore and describe communication technology channels students perceive would be effective ways to receive information from their college that are not being used.

Methodology: This mixed methods research design used quantitative and qualitative data to inform the research questions in relation to community college students’ perception of communication technology effectiveness. The study was a sequential mixed methods study; the quantitative survey results helped to inform the semistructured questions for the qualitative focus groups. The survey link was sent to students attending the sample colleges. Students had the option to volunteer to participate in a virtual focus group, which followed the survey at both sample colleges. The sample included students who attended one of the study participant colleges and were 18 years of age or older.

Findings: The findings of this study indicate that community college students find communication channels currently in place to be effective overall. Students find email and text messages to be effective communication channels, but microblogs and social networking sites (SNS) are not effective. The research findings did not indicate students’ preference for a communication channel that was not already being used at their colleges.

Conclusions: The study offers insight into community college student perceptions. Specifically, community college students are not dissatisfied with the existing communication channels. Based on the literature and the findings of this study, email is still considered a standard for communication, but social media should be used for social purposes only.

Recommendations for Action: Colleges should not leave email behind any time soon, nor should they look for new communication technologies to solve communication challenges. Colleges need to create communication plans and should use social media wisely.