Date of Award

2009

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts Honours

School

School of Psychology and Social Sciences

Faculty

Faculty of Computing, Health and Science

First Advisor

Lynne Cohen

Abstract

Around one third of all first year University students will not continue their studies in second year. Students who incur difficulties transitioning from one context to another have been found to withdraw due to an inability to cope with the challenges and adversity in their new environment. On the other hand, many students are able to effectively overcome significant difficulties they are faced with during the transition to or through university. This concept may be referred to as resilience. Few studies have investigated the role of resilience in the success of university students with no research currently focusing on second year university students. Furthermore, few studies have examined the resilience of university students in terms of individual dispositional attributes and how such attributes contribute to the retention of students. The present research examined the resilience of second year university students and several dispositional attributes expected to contribute to their resilience, including self-esteem, social support, Problem-Focused Coping (PFC) and Emotion-Focused Coping (EFC). Consistent with expectations, results from this study indicated that students with higher levels of self-esteem, social support and PFC predicted higher levels of resilience. Furthermore, students with lower levels of EFC were found to report higher levels of resilience. This study has contributed to the limited research that has been conducted concerning the resilience of second year university students, in Australia.

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