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Personal efficiency and subjective well-being in the academic environment Cristescu Ioana Irina student Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences University of Bucharest, Romania Contact data: irinacristescu@ya hoo.com

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personal efficiency and subjective well being in the academic environment

Personal efficiency and subjective well-being in the academic environment

Cristescu Ioana Irina

student

Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences

University of Bucharest, Romania

Contact data: irinacristescu@yahoo.com

slide2

the sample and the methodology of this study belong to a research project named “Research on student adaptation strategies to academic environment” ;

  • conducted by a team of professors from the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, University of Bucharest, with Prof. univ. dr. Mielu Zlate as the director of the project;
  • with the support of The Romanian Ministry of Education and Research and The National University Research Council;
  • goal: the evaluation and improvement of student’s adaptation to college.
personal efficiency

Difficulties in defining efficiency

  • Lack of terminological consensus:

efficiency

effectivness

efficacy

effectivity

effectuality

efectualness

Personal efficiency

  • Widley variant meanings in different disciplines:

economic efficiency

algorithmic efficiency

textual efficiency

electrical efficiency

thermodynamic efficiency

mechanical efficiency

personal efficiency4

Psychological point of view:

Edgar Schein:

Personalefficiency

“ the ability of a system of surviving,

adapting,

maintaining and developing” (apud Zlate, 2004)

Campbell, Muchinsky:

Evaluative dimension

“an evaluation of performance results” (apud Zlate, 2004).

Performance dimension

Ollivier:

“a state of mind, that translates a different manner of conceiving the events”

“an art of living”

Axiologicaldimension

“a philosophy of action”,

“a discipline of the spirit” (apud Zlate, 2004).

slide5

Personalefficiency

  • Psycho organizational point of view:
  • organizational efficiency
  • group efficiency
  • interpersonal eficiency
  • personal efficiency

Personal efficiency is centered on the individual and his personal features:

  • goals
  • beliefs
  • motivations
  • qualities
  • abilities

Axiological dimension

Motivational dimension

Skill dimension

Mielu Zlate:

personal efficiency is “the manner in which the individual controls his own resources, especially the psychological ones, as well as the results he obtains” (Zlate, 2004).

slide6

Personalefficiency

Jean Francois Decker: the resources required for obtaining efficiency:

  • desire, motivation to fulfill the specifies goals

Motivational dimension

  • Confidence in succeeding and as well in personal abilities and qualities

Self-confidence dimension

  • decision in achieving the goals, decision that allows mobilizing the resources and capacities.

Decisional dimension

Guy Missoum:psychological potential (among other factors like mental training and mental strategies) to be an important factor of personal efficiency.

Cognitive dimension

  • information processing
  • proper management of effort
  • proper management ofenergy and emotions
  • maintenance of optimal interpersonal relationships
  • self-confidence.

Regulatory, energetic, emotional dimension

Psychosocialdimension

Self-confidence dimension

slide7

Personalefficiency

  • Psycho educational point of view:

1977- Alfred Bandura:Perceived self-efficacy

“people's beliefs about their capabilities to produce designated levels of performance that exercise influence over events that affect their lives” (Bandura, 1994).

Self-evaluativedimension

Studies:

“college self-efficacy was significantly associated with college satisfaction” (DeWitz, Walsh, 2002).

“Self-efficacy beliefs provide the foundation for human motivation, well-being, and personal accomplishment” (Pajares, 2002).

slide8

Synthesis:

Cognitive dimension

Decisional dimension

Skill dimension

Regulatory, energetic, emotional dimension

Performance dimension

Axiological dimension

Evaluative dimension

Self-confidence dimension

Psychosocial dimension

Motivational dimension

personal academic efficiency

1.Objective dimension:

- final grades;

- results at the most difficult exam

- the number of failed exams

2. Axiological dimension:

- the way that intellectualism, academic achievement, status and independence are valued;

3. Self evaluative dimension:

-self evaluation of academic performance, self evaluation of social interactions in the academic environment (with colleagues, teachers), self evaluation of verbal interactions (during the courses, seminaries)

-self confidence

(These dimensions also involve the interpersonal dimension).

4. Psychosocial dimension

- social avoidance in the academic environment;

- social anxiety in the academic environment;

- social difficulties in the academic environment;

5. Motivational dimension:

- the type of motivation that orientated the student in choosing the academic specialization;

6. Academic environment integration dimension:

- the degree of correspondence between academic specialization and personal skills and abilities;

- the degree that students believe that the college will help them to fulfill their ideals;

- the degree that students believe that the college will help them to find a place in life;

- the degree that students are willing to involve in the academic study in order to achieve their goals

- the degree students believe that future success depends on the results they achieve in college

Personal academic efficiency

slide10

Well-being

  • Lack of terminological consensus:
  • quality of life
  • well-being
  • happiness
  • subjective well-being
  • psychological well-being
  • objective well-being, life satisfaction
  • hedonic and eudaimonic well-being

 ”The difference depends on who and what you read. Some researchers will state that many of the terms are synonymous, whereas others insist that there are fundamental differences” (Hird, 2003).

Objectivewell-being

  • refers to “non-feelings” (Gasper, 2004)
  • health state, financial status, socio-economical and demographic variables
  • “objective well-being is about indicators of housing, income, job, education and health…”(Hird, 2003)

Subjective well-being:

  • refers to “feelings” (Gasper, 2004)
  • “people’s emotional responses, domain satisfactions, and global judgments of life satisfaction” (Deiner, 1999)
slide11

Diener, Suh and Oishi defined subjective well-being (SWB) as

    • “a field of psychology that attempts to understand people's evaluations of their lives”. A person's evaluation of his or her life may be in the form of evaluative judgments about the satisfaction with life as a whole or in the form of pleasant or unpleasant affects.
  • Subjective well-being can be divided into:
  • Cognitive component: - “satisfaction with the various domains of life”
  • Affective component: - “pleasant affect can be divided into specific emotions such as joy, affection, and pride”
  • - “unpleasant affect can be separated into specific emotions and moods such as shame, guilt, sadness, anger, and anxiety” (Diener, 2004).
slide12

Subjective

well-being

Personal academic efficiency

Performance dimension

Satisfaction

Axiological dimension

Self evaluation dimension

Positiveaffect

Psychosocial dimension

Motivational dimension

Negativeaffect

Integration in the

academic environment

slide13

Objectives

  • identifying and measuring several factors involved in the academic environment that are strongly related and have a great impact on students’ well-being, as well as the nature of this relation. At a more particular level, the study focuses on the dimensions of personal academic efficiency that exercise a significant influence on the well-being of students’ in the academic environment.
  • establishing the amount of contribution brought by every particular variable in part on student’s well-being. A comparative analysis is conducted, regarding the degree in which school grades and performances contribute to students’ well-being (as an objective dimension), in comparison with the other dimensions of personal efficiency.
slide14

Hypotheses

Thefirst hypothesis sustains that the dimensions of personal academic efficiency exercise a significant influence on students’ well-being.

Thesecond hypothesis sustains that school performances exercise a low influence on students’ well-being in comparison to the other dimensions of personal academic efficiency.

slide15

Participants

  • 618 students
  • in the second year of study
  • from different faculties from the University of Bucharest:
  • Economical Sciences, Social Assistance, Physics, Geography, History, Foreign Languages, Linguistic, Mathematics, Psychology and Sociology.

All participants were full time students attending an optional psycho-pedagogical course.

The data collection took place during the first semester of the second year of study and the participants completed written questioners regarding their experiences in the first year of study, a period of great transition in the life of every student.

slide16

Instruments

  • The instruments are the ones of the research project named: “Research on student adaptation strategies to academic environment”, conducted by a team of professors from the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, University of Bucharest formed by: Prof. univ. dr. Mielu Zlate (director of the project), Prof. univ. dr. Tinca Cretu, Conf. univ. dr. Valeria Negovan, Lect. univ. Romeo Cretu and Prep. univ. Eugen Avram. The inventories used contain different scales and were validated by the members of the project team named above.
    • The Inventory of Personal Values (PVS – Scott) with the scales of Intellectualism, Academic Accomplishment, Status and Independence.
    • The Inventory of Affective Balance (Bradburn) with the scales of Positive Affect and Negative Affect.
    • The Inventory of Personal Evaluation (PVI – Shrauger) with the scales of Academic Performance, Social Interaction and Verbal Interaction.
    • The Inventory of Anxiety and Social Avoidance (SAD – Watson, Friend) with the scales of Anxiety and Social Avoidance.
    • The Inventory of Satisfaction (LSIA – Neugarten) with the scales of Mood Tone, Zest for Life, Congruence between Goal and Accomplishment.
    • The Inventory of Occupational Values (V. Negovan) with the scales of Centred on Being, Centred on Having, Centred on Doing.
    • The Inventory of Integration in the Academic Environment (T. Cretu).
    • The Inventory of Anticipations regarding Profession (M. Zlate, E. Avram).
    • Except for the Inventory of Personal Values, the Inventory of Occupational Values, the Inventory of Personal Evaluation, the Inventory of Integration in the Academic Environment and the Inventory of Anticipations regarding Profession, all others regard the experiences students had in the first year of study.
slide17

Results and discussions

The statistical analysis successfully confirmed the first hypothesis that sustained that students’ well-being is significantly influenced by the dimensions of personal academic efficiancy. A multiple regression analisys revealed the following results:

- 52.9% of students’ satisfaction in the academic environment can be explained on the basys of the dimensions of personal academic efficiency;

- 41.3% of student’s positive affect experienced in the academic environment can be explained on the basys of the dimensions of personal academic efficiency;

- 53.1% of student’s negative affect experienced in the academic environment can be explained on the basys of the dimensions of personal academic efficiency;

Satisfaction

Performance dimension

52.9%

Axiological dimension

Self evaluation dimension

41.3%

Positiveaffect

Personal academic efficiency

Psychosocial dimension

Motivational dimension

Integration in the

academic environment

53.1%

Negativeaffect

slide18

Of all the particular dimensions of personal academic efficiency, the self-evaluative one has been proven to have the greatest impact, explaining approximately 30% of the total variance of well-being.

We can talk about the determinants of well-being in terms of perception, in terms of self-image, of perceived “self-efficacy” as Bandura stated.

”subjective assessments are more influential in determining well-being and life satisfaction than objective circumstances”(Hutchinson,2004).

slide19

T-test comparison revealed that intrinsic-motivatedstudents are significantly more satisfied, and are experiencing more positive affects in the first year of study then the extrinsic-motivated ones. (The questionnaire belongs to Prof. Univ. Dr. Tinca Cretu)

The T-test comparison showed that the students who were motivated in their decision by teachers are shown to be significantly more satisfied, as well as efficient in the academic environment in comparison with the students influenced by parents or colleagues, friends. (The questionnaire belongs to Prof. Univ. Dr. Tinca Cretu)

The interpersonal and psychosocial dimension of personal efficiency was found to explain 27,5% of the total satisfaction experienced by the student in the academic environment.

slide20

All these dimensions are minimized or neglected when referring to academic efficiency. Student’s academic achievement is often judged only by the academic performance: “academic achievement may be high, medium or low in accordance to the correlation between academic acquirements and obtained performances” (Golu, 2003, p. 339).

But the same author points that, “even though it is expressed by performances, the academic success does not reduce to them. It is a much more complex construct that engages, beyond the final, resulting expression of performance, numerous psychological and extra psychological variables, cognitive and non-cognitive, personal and interpersonal, individual and social variables” (Golu, 2003, p339).

As we can see, the role of academic performances is overemphasized and limits the theoretical conceptions regarding improving personal academic efficiency, as well as the practical possibilities and solutions for increasing well-being.

slide21

The statistical analysis also confirmed the second hypoyhesis that sustained that school performances exercise less influence on students’ well-being than the other dimensions of personal academic efficiency.

A linear regression analisys revealed the following results:

- only 6,2% of the total variance of satisfaction can be explained on the basys of school performances;

- only 6,1% of the total variance of positive affect can be explained on the basys of school performances;

- only 4,4% of the total variance of negative affect can be explained on the basys of school performances;

6,2%

Satisfaction

Performance dimension

6,1%

4,9%

Axiological dimension

Positiveaffect

Self evaluation dimension

Psychosocial dimension

49.6%

Motivational dimension

36,2%

Negativeaffect

Integration in the academic

environment

52,6%

slide22

students with high grades are found to be more satisfied in the academic environment (t=3,056, p<0,01), experiencing significantly more intense positive affects (t=3,665, p<0,01) than the ones with low grades.

  • students with failed exams appeared to be significantly less satisfied (t=2.663, p<001) and to experience less intense positive affects (t=-3,549, p<0,01).
  • the statistical analysis shows a Pearson correlation coefficient r= 0,239, p<0,01 between final grades and satisfaction and r=0,325, p<0,01 between final grades and positive affects. There has also been found a negative correlation between the number of failed exam and satisfaction on one hand (r=-0,221, p,0,01), and positive affect on the other hand (r=-0,237, p<0,01).
slide23

The issues discussed below should not be neglected because they exercise a major contribution to student’s well-being in the academic environment.

An appropriate management and control of these factors could lead to an improvement of the efficiency and quality of the academic environment, and all these should be taken into account when developing strategies for promoting well-being

Thank you

slide24

REFERENCES:

AVRAM, E. (2005), Valorizarea creativităţii si încrederii în reuşita profesională, in “Revista de psihopedagogie”, no. 1, 2005, Editura Fundaţiei Humanitas.

BANDURA, A. (1994), Self-efficacy, in V. S. Ramachaudran (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human behavior (Vol. 4, pp. 71- 81). New York: Academic Press. (Reprinted in H. Friedman [Ed.], Encyclopedia of mental health. San Diego: Academic Press, 1998).

CREŢU, T. (2003), Adolescenta si contectul sau de dzvoltare, Editura Credis, Bucuresti.

CREŢU, T. (2004), Specificul atitudinilor faţă de sarcinile de studio academic la studenţii din anul I, in “Revista de psihologie organizaţională”, Vol. IV, nr. 3-4, 2004, Editura Polirom, Iaşi.

DEINER, E., EUNKOOK, E., OISHI. S. (2004), Recent Findings on Subjective Well-Being,Jonurnal of Personality Assessment Vol.49 No.1 1985, http://www.psych.uiuc.edu/~ediener/hottopic/hottopic.html.

DeWITZ, S. J., WALSH, W. B. (2002),Self-Efficacy and College Student Satisfaction, inJournal of Career Assessment, Vol. 10, No. 3, 315-326 (2002).

GOLU, P. (2003), Psihologie educationala, Ed. Miron , Bucuresti.

HIRD, S. (2003), What is well-being? a brief review of current literature and concepts, NHS Health Scotland, http://www.phis.org.uk/doc.pl?file=pdf/What%20is%20wellbeing%202.doc.

HUTCHINSON, G., SIMEON, D.T., BAIN, B.C, WYATT, G.E., TUCKER, M.B., LEFRANC, E. (2004), Social and health determinants of well being and life satisfaction in Jamaica, International Journal of Social Psychiatry, Vol. 50, No. 1, 43-53 (2004).MARSHALL, G.N., BURNAM, M.A., KOEGEL, P., SULLIVAN, G. & BENJAMIN, B. (1996), Objective life circumstances and life satisfaction: results from the course of homelessness study, Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 37(1), 44–58.

NEGOVAN, V. (2004), Aspecte ale relaţiei valori profesionale- angajare în dezvoltarea carierei în psihologie, in « Revista de psihologie organizaţională », Vol. IV, nr. 1-2, 2004, Editura Polirom, Iaşi.

PAJARES, F. (2002), Overview of social cognitive theory and of self-efficacy, http://www.emory.edu/EDUCATION/mfp/eff.html.

RYFF, C. D. (1994), Psychological Well-Being in Adult Life, in “Current Directions in Psychological Science” , http://midmac.med.harvard.edu/bullet3.html.

ZLATE, M. (2004), Tratat de psihologie organizational-manageriala, Editura Polirom, Iasi.

ZLATE, M., AVRAM, E. (2004), Reprezentarea perspectivelor profesionale şi relaţia cu gradul de adaptare la cerinţele mediului academic, in « Revista de psihologie psihopedagogică », no. 2, 2004, Editura Fundaţiei Humanitas.