Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A. DiTomasso, Ph.D., ABPP

First Advisor

Rosemary Mennuti, Ed.D., Chairperson

Second Advisor

George McCloskey, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Christopher A. Kearney, Ph.D.


The present study, using shelf data, described a quantitative research project which attempted to propound and answer questions about the nature of school refusal in a Pennsylvania school district. The study analyzed shelf data that surveyed 40 students and parents in grades 2 through 11th who missed more than ten percent of 2007-2008 school year. Using shelf data collected by the GNA school district which consisted of parent and student surveys, this study investigated the different reasons why students refuse to attend school. Furthermore, this study also examined common characteristics found among school-refusing students in the Greater Nanticoke Area School District. Results of this study did not support previous findings of a positive correlation between parents’ permissive parenting styles and higher rates of school refusal. Although results revealed a relatively equal representation of school refusal across grades, slightly higher rates of school refusal behavior was noted among 6th grade students. No differences in gender were reported. Limitations of the study and suggestions for future research were also discussed.