Academic achievement and general well-being of undergraduate university students : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Psychology at Massey University
This study investigated the academic achievement and general well-being of a sample of 107 students studying at the Albany campus of Massey University's College of Business. Relationships between academic achievement and general well-being, and the variables of English language ability, experienced difficulties, general self-efficacy, and received social support were investigated. To further understand these variables, demographic group differences including gender, age, ethnicity, residency status, country of birth, years enrolled at Massey University, proportion of life lived in New Zealand, years of secondary schooling in New Zealand, home environment, course of study, and major subject, were assessed. In addition, a Student Difficulties Scale is constructed to measure experienced difficulties and focus group transcripts were analysed to facilitate an enhanced understanding of the specific difficulties experienced by this student population. Positive correlations were identified between academic achievement and the variables of general well-being, English language ability, and general self-efficacy. A positive correlation was also identified between general well-being and general self-efficacy. Experienced difficulties was negatively related to all variables other than received social support. English language ability was identified as the best predictor of academic achievement and experienced difficulties as the best predictor of general well-being. Significant differences between demographic subgroups were found on all variables other than the 'positive social exchange' dimension of received social support. Recommendations were made as to how the overall academic achievement and well-being of this population of students may be enhanced.