UNIVERSITY STUDENTS’ GROWTH GOALS, OPPORTUNITIES FOR GOAL FULFILLMENT, AND PERCEIVED UNIVERSITY AND MESOSYSTEM SUPPORT

Authors

  • Zigmunds Freibergs University of Latvia
  • Aleksandrs Kolesovs University of Latvia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.17770/sie2021vol7.6159

Keywords:

academic support, growth goals, mesosystem support, perceived opportunities

Abstract

This study assessed the relationship between students’ growth goals and perceived opportunities to achieve these goals in Latvia and the perceived support from the university and the mesosystem. Socialization models emphasize that the setting of personal goals occurs in continuous interaction with the sociocultural context, which includes perceived opportunities to achieve these goals and the interpersonal environment. Both – perceived support from close people (mesosystems) and perceived support from the university – are significant for students. The study involved 432 university students between 18 and 49. We have assessed the extent to which students’ goals regarding education, work, and personal growth are predicted by perceived opportunities to achieve these goals in Latvia and by the perceived support from parents, relatives, friends, classmates, teachers, and the university as an institution. The results of structural equation modeling revealed that personal growth goals are positively predicted by all three elements - the perceived opportunities to achieve these goals and the perceived academic and mesosystem support. The support of the classmates was connected to the support of the mesosystem that indicates the importance of friendly relations among students. Students’ growth goals were the most closely associated with the perceived support in their specific environment – the university. In general, the results confirm the complex interaction of personal growth goals with the social and cultural environment in particular circumstances.

References

Arnett, J. J. (2000). Emerging adulthood: A theory of development from the late teens through the twenties. American Psychologist, 55(5), 469–480. https://doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.55.5.469

Emmons, R. A. (2003). Personal goals, life meaning, and virtue: Wellsprings of a positive life. In C. L. M. Keyes & J. Haidt (Eds.), Flourishing: Positive psychology and the life well-lived (pp. 105–128). American Psychological Association. https://doi.org/10.1037/10594-005

Gudykunst, W. B. (2004). Understanding cultural differences. In Bridging differences: Effective intergroup communication (pp. 41-73). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781452229706.n2

Kolesovs, A. (2015). Prediction of distant educational goals by goals in other domains and perceived contextual opportunities. In V. Lubkina, & S. Usca (Eds.), Society, Integration, Education: Vol. 4. Proceedings of the International Scientific Conference (pp. 40–47). Rēzekne: Rēzeknes Augstskola. https://doi.org/10.17770/sie2015vol4.335

Kolesovs, A. (2017). Individual future orientation and demographic factors predicting life satisfaction. In V. Lubkina, I. Baranauskiene, & K. Mārtinsone (Eds.), Society, Integration, Education: Vol. 1, Proceedings of the International Scientific Conference (pp. 534–543). Rezekne: Rezekne Academy of Technologies. https://doi.org/10.17770/sie2017vol1.2448

Kolesovs, A. (2019). The ethnolinguistic group, gender, and perceived educational support as predictors of growth-oriented goals in university students from Latvia. Proceedings of the 13th International Technology, Education and Development Conference (pp. 1361–1364). https://doi.org/10.21125/inted.2019.0427

Kolesovs, A., Salima, I., & Maskovs, A. (2018). Formulations of the main goal in life: A qualitative content analysis. In V. Lubkina, K. Šneidere, S. Ušča, & A. Zvaigzne (Eds.), Society, Integration, Education: Vol. VII. Proceedings of the International Scientific Conference (pp. 104-114). Rezekne: Rezekne Academy of Technologies. https://doi.org/10.17770/sie2018vol1.3108

Machado, M.D.L., Brites, R., Magalhães, A., & Sá, M. (2011). Student satisfaction with higher education: Critical data for student development. European Journal of Education, 46(3), 415-432. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/deref/http%3A%2F%2Fdx.doi.org%2F10.1111%2Fj.1465-3435.2011.01489.x

Nurmi, J.-E. (2004). Socialization and self-development: Channeling, selection, adjustment, and reflection. In R. M. Lerner & L. Steinberg (Eds.), Handbook of adolescent psychology (pp. 85–124). John Wiley & Sons Inc. https://doi.org/10.1002/9780471726746.ch4

Rosseel, Y. (2012). lavaan: An R package for structural equation modeling. Journal of Statistical Software, 48(2), 1–36. https://doi.org/10.18637/jss.v048.i02

Seginer, R., Vermulst, A., & Shoyer, S. (2004). The indirect link between perceived parenting and adolescent future orientation: A multiple-step model. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 28(4), 365–378. https://doi.org/10.1080/01650250444000081

Seginer, R. (2009). Future orientation: Developmental and ecological perspectives. New York, NY: Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/b106810

Downloads

Published

2021-05-28