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An exploration of university student perceptions of discipline

An exploration of university student perceptions of discipline The role of discipline in achieving higher academic and workplace performance is receiving increasing attention; however, research into student discipline has historically centred on schools. The purpose of this paper is to explore how university students from multiple faculties and at different stages of academic progression understand discipline in higher education, with the aim to investigate how graduates could become more disciplined and more work ready.Design/methodology/approachThis study adopted a qualitative exploratory approach. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with university students and analysed using thematic analysis.FindingsThe students viewed discipline as internally driven as opposed to being enforced externally, which is often the case in schools. Five main themes were identified as discipline dimensions: “focus”, “intention”, “responsibility”, “structure” and “time” (F.I.R.S.T.).Originality/valueA new concept of discipline is presented, underpinned by a conceptual framework comprised of self-determination, goal-setting, self-efficacy, self-regulation and time management principles. A “Threshold Concept of Discipline”, a hierarchical four-layered concept that develops over time for every individual with the ultimate level being “Creative Discipline”, is proposed. These findings illuminate learning strategies that higher education institutions can use to further enhance learning and increase the work readiness of their graduates. Such strategies can empower students who aspire to perform at a higher level and to become true professionals. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Higher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning Emerald Publishing

An exploration of university student perceptions of discipline

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2042-3896
DOI
10.1108/heswbl-02-2019-0026
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The role of discipline in achieving higher academic and workplace performance is receiving increasing attention; however, research into student discipline has historically centred on schools. The purpose of this paper is to explore how university students from multiple faculties and at different stages of academic progression understand discipline in higher education, with the aim to investigate how graduates could become more disciplined and more work ready.Design/methodology/approachThis study adopted a qualitative exploratory approach. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with university students and analysed using thematic analysis.FindingsThe students viewed discipline as internally driven as opposed to being enforced externally, which is often the case in schools. Five main themes were identified as discipline dimensions: “focus”, “intention”, “responsibility”, “structure” and “time” (F.I.R.S.T.).Originality/valueA new concept of discipline is presented, underpinned by a conceptual framework comprised of self-determination, goal-setting, self-efficacy, self-regulation and time management principles. A “Threshold Concept of Discipline”, a hierarchical four-layered concept that develops over time for every individual with the ultimate level being “Creative Discipline”, is proposed. These findings illuminate learning strategies that higher education institutions can use to further enhance learning and increase the work readiness of their graduates. Such strategies can empower students who aspire to perform at a higher level and to become true professionals.

Journal

Higher Education, Skills and Work-based LearningEmerald Publishing

Published: Jan 20, 2020

Keywords: Higher education; Qualitative research; Academic performance; Work readiness; Discipline definition; F.I.R.S.T. discipline

References