Psychological And Pedagogical Support Of The First-Year Students’adaptation Process To A University

Abstract

The article deals with the issues of psychological and pedagogical support of the adaptation of first-year student teachers to study at a university. In the article, based on the analysis of research and educational practice on this issue, the essence of the concept of “adaptation” is revealed in the context of teaching freshmen at high school as well as semantic accents and features of first-year students’ adaptation in the logic of various scientific fields. The results of the ascertaining experiment made it possible to identify the main problem areas that make it difficult for first-year student teachers to adapt to study at a university. The theoretical comprehension of the research problem and the experimental identification of the level of adaptation of first-year students to university studies show the importance of creating an effective psychological and pedagogical support for the process of adaptation of first-year students to university studies. The article presents a comprehensive program of psychological and pedagogical support of first-year students to study at a university, in which the main areas of activities are highlighted: informational, diagnostic, psychological, social, didactic, organizational-pedagogical; the levels of implementation of the adaptation program at the faculty: the academic council of the faculty, the Dean's Office, the curators of the academic groups under the leadership of the deputy dean for educational work; teachers in the framework of the taught disciplines, as well as curators of groups of the 1st course.

Keywords: Adaptationfirst-year studentsvocational trainingfuture teacherspsychological and pedagogical support

Introduction

According to the age periodization of Ananyev (1980), the student period is a sensitive period for the development of the social norms of the basic sociogenic potential of a person. The training of first-year students at higher education institution is connected with new requirements, regulations of the educational institution, which cause stressful conditions of a student. Along with them and rather often, the new conditions of life, the remoteness from places of living of their parents and their families, the necessity for independent personal money distribution for a long time make worse the negative psychological states of students. In accordance with the concept of Pavlov (1951), such situation can lead to psychophysiological phenomenon, leading to nervous breakdowns and stress reactions. Vocational education is a process of intellectual development, which has not only a general cultural character, but also a professional orientation of a studying personality. Professional training provides the intensive mastering by a student of a large volume of knowledge. But our view is that it is the student’s knowledge of the methodology of cognition that becomes the key condition for the development of independence, when the student has the opportunity to realize his subject characteristics and then the development of intellectual initiative takes place. At the same time, the process of adaptation is determined by the individual characteristics of freshmen, their motives, ambitions, and interests. Knowledge of their individual characteristics by a teacher (curator) makes it possible to avoid disadaptation syndrome, to make the process of adaptation of a first-year student less dramatic devoid stressful situation. A prerequisite for the successful educational process for a student is the development of a new educational conditions at the university. During the first year of study, the first-year student joins the student team, his or her skills and abilities of rational organization of mental activity are being formed, students realize the interest for the chosen profession, develop an optimal mode of work, leisure and lifestyle, at the same time professionally significant personal qualities are being developed and trained. The process of social adaptation of a first-year student determines adaptation to a new system of education, adaptation to changes in the training regime and joining a new team.

With all the variety of approaches in science to the concept of adaptation, most researchers consider that its main function is the adoption by the individual of the norms and values of the new social environment (group or team which he or she enters), the forms of social interaction, formal and informal relationships that have developed here and also of forms of subject activity (for example, ways of professional performance of work).

There are several forms of social adaptation: disadaptation, passive and active.

Disadaptation is characterized by the non-differentiation of the goals and types of activities of an individual, the narrowing of his or her circle of communication and problems to be solved, and, most importantly, the rejection of the norms and values of the new social environment, and in some cases resisting them.

Passive adaptation involves that the individual accepts norms and values according to the principle “I am like everyone”, but does not seek to change anything, even if it is within his power. Passive adaptation manifests itself in the presence of simple goals and non-operative activities, but the circle of contacts and problems to be solved is wider compared to the level of disadaptation.

Active adaptation, first of all, contributes to successful socialization in general. The individual not only accepts the norms and values of the new social environment, but also builds up his or her activities, relations with people based on them. Meanwhile, it isn’t uncommon that such people form more and more new diverse goals, but the main goal is still full self-realization in the new social environment. The communication and interest’s areas of a person with an active adaptation is really wide. Ultimately, this level of adaptation leads to a harmonious unity with oneself, with people, with the world.

Adaptation of university students to learning activities, a new way of life is determined by the effectiveness of the system of adaptation measures. Kalinina (2004) and Menchov (2015) use the criteria of fact in assessing the adaptation of first-year students (orderliness of the educational institution in accordance with the developed and implemented concept, the presence of a group of like-minded people, the creation of psychological and pedagogical conditions for system development); and also, the quality criteria (degree of compliance of the educational system with the goals set; observance of the principles of cooperation, humanistic relations, democratic communication style, social security of teachers and students, teachers' professionalism).

Problem Statement

The relevance of the problem of adaptation of first-year students to studying at a higher education institution is driven by the need to implement the principle of succession of general and higher education. There are a number of key problem areas between the system of general and vocational education, which negatively affect the psycho-emotional state of first-year students. Adaptation of first-year students covers not only adaptation to the specific educational activities of the university, but also the adaptation to new social conditions, including both extracurricular activities and the organization of leisure and lifestyle.

Research Questions

  • To substantiate the system of diagnostic methods and to reveal the peculiarities of psychological problems that make it difficult for first-year students to adapt to higher education;

  • To develop a comprehensive program, which defines the directions, stages, content of the educational activities for the effective adaptation of first-year students to university studies;

  • To determine the conditions for effective psychological and pedagogical support of the adaptation process of first-year students to university studies.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the research is to develop a program of psychological and pedagogical support of the adaptation of first-year student teachers to university education.

Research Methods

Questioning, testing, sociometry, sociological survey; individual consulting; trainings.

The experimental base of the research was the Adygei State University, the faculty of pedagogy and psychology.

Findings

In psychological and pedagogical research, the adaptation of the first-year students is considered in the context of vocational training at the university. At the same time, the experience of studying at a higher education institution indicates that the technology of adaptation of a first-year student’s personality is insufficiently developed. Adaptation to the new conditions of education in the framework of higher education is a complex, interdependent process, which manifests itself in three areas: cognition, psycho-physiological well-being and communication. At the same time, the considered sides of the adaptation of first-year students do not guarantee its success; the individual characteristics, needs and interests of the student are not less important.

The content of psychological and pedagogical support of social adaptation of students to the university environment includes the following components:

  • formation of ideas about the structure of the educational process, about extracurricular activities; the formation of skills and abilities of educational activities, the development of self-study, self-education, self-realization; integration of students into the multicultural environment of the university;

  • the development of group cohesion, the creation of a favorable psychological climate in a student team; development of effective interpersonal skills, increasing of self-confidence; students mastering of the ethical standards, values and traditions of the university’s corporate culture, the rules and norms of communication in the academic environment; formation of healthy lifestyle skills;

  • analysis of abilities and interests, experience of public work of first-year students; creating conditions for the formation of creative teams in student groups; creating conditions for the inclusion of freshmen in student life: in cultural - creative, sports, scientific and social activities.

In the process of adaptation of first-year students to the university, the following risk factors are identified: negative experiences associated with the lack of continuity in the “school-university” system, changing the school students team to the university students one with other rules and interaction models: greater alienation, insufficient moral support from the pedagogical and student team; uncertainty of the motivation of the choice of profession, insufficient psychological preparation for such situations.

The multidimensionality of the process of adaptation of first-year students requires a comprehensive solution of social, pedagogical, communicative, and psycho-emotional problems within the framework of the psychological and pedagogical support of students.

Sociological survey on the identification of the social status of students (September) (Figure 1 ).

89 students entered the 1st course. Currently - 84 people.

Foreign students (Turkmenistan) - 12

Students with disabilities and HIA - 1

Orphan students - 12

Living in a dorm - 20

Passed the winter session to "excellent" -8; “good and excellent”- 33; “failed” - 15 students.

Enrolled at a faculty by vocation (true inclination towards psycho-pedagogical activity) - 48 students.

On insistence of a family-16 students; for other reasons - 25 students.

Received information about ASU from the university advertising - 29 people.

From information of relatives and friends - 29 people; from ASU students - 7 people, from peers - 11 people.

Enrolled without special training-44 people., with the help of courses and tutors - 20 people.

Financial standing: high level-7, medium-35, low level - 47 people.

Questioning students to identify the level of comfort living in a dormitory (September):

Hostel number №2 - 1 person.; № 3 - 15 people; hostel on Zhukovsky,18 - 3 people.

Age of roommates

a) older - 11; b) the same as mine - 8; c) younger - 1

- Would you prefer to live together with fellow students or it doesn’t matter for you?

a) would like to live with fellow students - 8 b) no matter - 9.

Does the sanitary condition of the rooms satisfy you?

a) yes - 14 b) not much - 4 c) no - 2

Does the location of your place and things in the room suit you?

a) yes - 16 b) not much - 4

Is there a fridge you can use?

a) yes - 17 b) no - 1

Is it possible to watch TV?

a) yes - 5; b) no - 13

Are you satisfied with the conditions in the kitchen?

a) yes - 17 b) no - 3

Does the sanitary condition of a toilet satisfy you?

a) yes - 16 b) no - 2

Does a shower schedule suit you?

a) yes - 18 b) no - 2

Have you made contacts with your roommates?

a) yes - 18 b) not yet - 2 c) no - 0

Are household duties assigned in your room?

a) yes - 17 b) no - 3

Who do you refer to with your hostel problems?

a) to a Deputy Dean for educational and pedagogical work-1

Figure 1: Testing of students for the identification of socio-psychological adaptability (the test of the SPA-special abilities by Rogers and Diamond (2002))
Testing of students for the identification of socio-psychological adaptability (the test of the SPA-special abilities by Rogers and Diamond
       (2002))
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Based on the analysis of the results of the ascertaining stage, a comprehensive program of psychological and pedagogical support for the adaptation of first-year students to the conditions of study at a university on the basis of diagnostics of students' personal, cognitive and social spheres has been substantiated and implemented.

The main directions of the implementation of the program of psychological and pedagogical support of the adaptation of first-year students to university studies:

  • informational direction - organization of informational support of first-year students;

  • diagnostic direction - conducting social surveys; psychological and career guidance testing;

  • psychological direction - psychological support of adaptation of first-year students;

  • social direction - social assistance and support of students in the process of adaptation;

  • didactic direction - the formation of skills and abilities of educational activities, the development of self-study;

  • organizational and pedagogical direction - implementation of the Educational Work Program at the Adyghe State University, development and implementation of measures for inclusion of first-year students to the university’s corporate culture, developing their skills of a healthy lifestyle and socially active position.

  • organizational and methodological direction - methodological support of adaptation and formation of assets of academic groups;

  • resulting and evaluation direction - monitoring of the implementation of this program.

Psychological and pedagogical support of adaptation of first-year students to study at the university involves several steps:

Stage 1 - conducting a sociological survey to identify a problem area associated with the adaptation of first-year students; through diagnosis, revealing the peculiarities of psychological problems that make adaptation difficult (motivation for learning activities, ability for conscious self-regulation of behavior, level of aspirations, communicative features of first-year students, etc.).

A complex psycho-diagnostic examination is needed to assess the need for the formulation of the adaptive goals of psycho-correctional work with students. Consulting curators on the implementation of this program.

Stage 2 - carrying out psychological, social, educational activities in the training groups of first-year students in close cooperation with the curators of the groups.

Stage 3 - evaluation of the effectiveness of the psychological, social and pedagogical work.

Levels of implementation of the adaptation program:

The Faculty Academic Council is the main body for quality control and quality assessment of program implementation;

The implementation of the main directions of the program is carried out by the dean's office, as well as by the curators of academic groups under the leadership of the deputy dean for educational work.

At the cathedral level, the process of adaptation of first-year students is carried out by the faculty within the framework of the disciplines taught, as well as by the staff of the departments who are the curators of the first-year groups.

The implementation of this program of the adaptation of first-year students contributes to:

  • optimization of the process of adaptation of first-year students to the conditions of the university;

  • optimization of student learning activities;

  • the disclosure of the intellectual and personal potential of students, the support of their mental and physical health;

  • providing assistance to curators in organization of educational and extracurricular work with first-year students.

Program Evaluation and Expected Results

The effectiveness of the implementation of the program is determined by the following criteria:

  • satisfactory level of academic performance of the group;

  • formed team of the academic group

  • social activity and mobility of the group;

  • lack of intragroup conflicts.

Successful solution of these problems is associated with the introduction of this form of interaction with students, which would contribute to more effective adaptation of first-year students at different levels:

  • educational - adaptation to educational activities;

  • psychological - the development of motivation to learn, self-confidence;

  • interpersonal - ensuring the processes of effective interpersonal interaction.

The results of the implementation of the program, the following factors:

  • a unified adaptation environment of the faculty, optimizing the process of adaptation of first year students to the conditions of study at Adyghy State University;

  • the integration of students with socio-cultural environment; reduced disadaptation at various levels;

  • steady results in the learning activities of first-year students;

  • increased safety of the contingent;

  • a harmonious system of social relationships in student groups was developed;

  • first-year students are involved in extracurricular activities;

  • the number of socially active students has been increased.

The program of psychological and pedagogical support of freshmen’s adaptation to university studies was tested: Assistance in social and general adaptation of the first-year students from foreign countries.

Debatable questions are the following:

  • Knowledge and practical use of Russian language in educational activities and communication (relatively good command of the language of 5 students out of 12).

  • Difficulties in mastering educational material and intermediate certification of students of this contingent.

Positive qualities of student data:

  • Active participation in culture, sports and social life of the faculty.

  • Good attendance of lectures.

  • Providing assistance in socio-psychological and pedagogical adaptation of first-year students with disabilities (there is no contingent)

Informing first year students about the rules of residence in a hostel, the norms of behavior and activities of the student council of the hostel

  • All first year students in need of a hostel are provided with the possibility of living in it.

  • Problems of interpersonal relations are solved by a transfer to another room upon a decision of the director of the hostel. Sharing double room is preferable.

  • 3.All curators visited their students in hostel and are aware of the existing problems.

  • Identified household problems of students (poor state of gas cookers, damage to the interior walls, the presence of cockroaches, old furniture).

Conclusion

Psychological and pedagogical support is a complex technology to help a first-year student of a university in solving problems of professional development.

The achieved steady results in educational and communication activities, positive dynamics of psycho-physiological well-being of first-year students testify about the effectiveness of the proposed program.

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Publisher

European Publisher

First Online

23.01.2020

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2020.01.30

Online ISSN

2357-1330