INITIAL ADAPTATION AND VALIDATION FOR BULGARIAN CONDITIONS OF A SCALE MEASURING THE ACADEMIC RESILIENCE AMONG STUDENTS
Resilience is a psychological entity that explains the success of some individuals despite the difficulties they face. It is an ability and resource to overcome failures or difficult individuals and mobilize for success. In the academic environment, it represents sustainability and increased probability of success and academic achievement at the university, regardless of what stressors or challenges the student faces. It occupies an important place as an important construct and a predictor of well-being, success, learning achievements and internal motivation. The purpose of this study is to describe in detail the scaling and validation of a scale designed to measure academic sustainability among fresh-school students in Bulgaria. One commonly used scale for measuring the academic resilience is Martin & Marsh (2006), which examines the educational correlates of resilience among high school students. This academic scale requires learners to assess their ability to cope with failures, challenges, disasters and pressures in the academic environment. In Bulgarian conditions, the Academic Resilience scale has been found to include six items and is approbated among 152 first-year students. Students were provided with a set of six positions about self-perceptions of their sustainability, distributed in a 7-points scale of Likert type. The overall reliability of the scale is good (α = 0.851). The results showed statistically significant differences between gender and field of study. The boys reported higher levels of resilience, which implied greater support from lectures in comparison to girls in the process of adapting to academic conditions. Correlations with the academic stress scale show negative relations, which is also an indication of the validity of this scale. This study found that the greatest obstacle to achieving academic resilience is the lack of knowledge on the part of the students. This gives reason to assume that they do not begin their university study with comparatively the same knowledge and this may be the main threat or fear of academic failure among those students who have to catch up with their peers in knowledge. The present study also has its limitations. For example, it is better to do a retest test to check the reusability of the scale and to conduct this research among students studying in humanities or engineering at the university. The psychometric properties of the academic resilience scale are an indication of a reliable tool to identify students who perceive themselves as unable to cope with the challenges of university success.
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