Negative Life Events and Resilience in Higher Education Students

Amadeu Matos Gonçalves, Lídia do Rosário Cabral, Manuela da Conceição Ferreira, Maria da Conceição Martins, João Carvalho Duarte
2017 European Journal of Social & Behavioural Sciences  
Resilience is the capacity to overcome life adversities in a positive and constructive manner. The transition from high school to a higher education degree might function as an enhancer of crises and vulnerabilities. Negative Life Events (NLE) constitute any adverse circumstances against human development, possibly threatening the individual's equilibrium. Our aim was to study how negative life events affect the resilience of higher education students, and to identify certain socio-demographic,
more » ... socio-demographic, family and academic variables, as well as negative life events they may have endured. A quantitative study based on a descriptive design sampled 382 students from a higher education institute in Portugal. In order to assess the proposed variables, Wagnild and Young's Scale of Resilience (1993) which was adapted for the Portuguese population by Carvalho and Pereira (2012) and the Negative Life Events Inventory (Gonçalves, 2014) was utilised. We found significant relationships between the capacity for resilience and age, marital status, area of residence, school, and the use of drugs. Regarding life events, the dimensions "Neglect", "Separation/Loss" and "Friend Satisfaction" were found to be strong predictors of resilience capacity. The results obtained show that higher negative life events indicate a student is better able to be self-sufficient and self-confident and have higher resilience. These results lead us to propose interventions which may facilitate the students' ability to overcome their problems.
doi:10.15405/ejsbs.211 fatcat:22qjqanltjb7bck27kwxzb5m5q