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A STUDY ON THE EMOTIONAL MATURITY ON SCHOOL ADJUSTMENT OF FRESH UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

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A STUDY ON THE EMOTIONAL MATURITY ON SCHOOL ADJUSTMENT OF FRESH UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the study

Transition from secondary school to the University is a complex process for almost all students.

Adjusting  to  college  life  immediately  after  school  becomes  a  difficult  transition  for  many

students.

The  decision  to  go  to  University  depends  on  many  reasons.  It  can  be  for  higher  education,

earning a degree, increasing knowledge or personal growth. Going to the University gives a

chance  to  the  students  to  learn  new  things,  meet  new  people,  to deal  effectively  with  new

experiences  and  challenges  which  eventually  help  them  in  their  personal  growth  and

development.

Adjustment difficulties arise from the differences between the expectations of the students and

realities of University life.

Students  whose  expectations  were  fearful  reported  more  stress,  depression,  and  poorer

university adjustment than students with other types of expectations, particularly prepared.

Adjustment to the University involves a variety of demands differing in kind and degree and

requiring  lot  of  coping  responses  or  adjustments.  It’s  not  only  academics  with  which  the

students are concerned; they are equally affected by the social and emotional changes. The first

year students have an increased personal freedom where they have to make their own decisions

and take the responsibility to maintain balance between various newfound demands. In college

they are required to adjust to the new environment and to work out their concerns directly with

the  teachers.  As  far  as  the  academic  adjustment  is  concerned,  students  are  expected  to  be
independent learners in college where they need to adjust with the new academic demands. It

is  different  from  what  they  experienced  in  school  because  here  they  have  to  face  more

competition, deal with more academic load and to maintain pace with other students in the class

they need to follow the different teaching styles.

For  fresh  students  it  is  again  important  to  adjust  themselves  with  the  social  climate  of  the

university. A  major  task  for  them  is  to  learn  to  manage  their  feelings  and  to  express  them

appropriately.

According  to  Geredes  and  Mallinckrodt  (1994)  who  studied  155  freshmen,  and  found  that

personal adjustment and integration into the social fabric of campus life play a role at least as

important as academic factors in student retention.

Pascarella  and  Terenzini  (1991)  describe  this  transition  as  a  “culture  shock  involving

significant social and psychological relearning in the face of encounters with new ideas, new

teachers and friends with quite varied values and beliefs, new freedoms and opportunities, and

new academic, personal and social demands”.

According to Astin’s (1999) theory of involvement, a highly involved student is one who, for

example, devotes considerable energy to studying, spends much time on campus, participates

actively  in  student  organizations,  and  interacts  frequently  with  faculty  members  and  other

students.

Enochs  and  Roland  (2006)  examined  the  relationship  between  living  environment,  gender,

overall  adjustment  to  college  and  social  adjustment  in  freshmen’s  academic  and  overall

adjustments. The study found that boys had significantly higher overall adjustment levels than

girls regardless of living environment.
The main purpose of education is the progress of physical, social activity, emotion, and wisdom

of student sustainability. The adequate education makes good quality human resources for a

rapidly  developing  country.  According  to  this  reason,  many  countries  have  been  trying  to

develop  the  educational  quality  in  the  national  policy  and  strategy  to  enhance  effective

implementation. The student’s academic achievement problem is not only occurring in Nigeria

but it also in many countries around the world. Some countries have been trying to solve this

problem  by  educational staff  development,  teaching  processes,  and  parent  and  community