Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Karen F. Osterman
Belonging is a psychological concept, defined as a feeling of connectedness or a feeling that one is cared for by others. Belonging is one of three basic psychological needs that are essential to human growth and development. It involves the need to feel securely connected with others in the environment and to experience oneself as worthy of love and respect. In an organizational setting, the feeling of belonging or relatedness can be defined as a sense of community. Current research tells us that belonging is important in understanding student (and adult) behavior and performance. The need to belong is a fundamental human motivation that is associated with differences in cognitive processing, emotional patterns, behavior, health, and well-being. Being accepted leads to positive emotions ...