Within the present exploratory pilot study, the overarching aim was to explore the possibility of a relationship between academic commitment and resilience within the higher education context of the University of Pretoria. Both academic commitment and resilience had previously been found to influence student perseverance despite adversity and was explored utilising Bronfenbrenner’s PPCT model based on his ecological theory as a conceptual framework; respondents were viewed as engines of their own development through engaging with proximal processes. The present study utilised a quantitative, correlational analysis of secondary data. The original data sets were both collected from the same sample of male and female adult higher education students whose ages ranged from 17 to 22 years. Data was collected by means of two survey instruments, namely the Resilience Scale for Middle-Adolescents in a Township School (R-MATS) and the Academic Commitment Scale (ACS). Findings indicated no significant correlation between academic commitment and resilience for Education students within the context of the University of Pretoria, however some correlations were evident between the subscales of the two constructs. A broader understanding regarding the relationship of these constructs could also assist with the identification of higher education students at risk, as well as informing possible interventions that can be put in place in order to better facilitate students in completing their courses of study. The results from the study, while viewed cautiously due to the sample size, address a perceived gap in the literature regarding whether a relationship exists between academic commitment and resilience and how this may link to student achievement.
Mini-dissertation (Med)--University of Pretoria, 2015.