Research Proposal to Study : the Impact of Stress on Students Academic Performance

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Nicole Kada
Philip Broster
Business Communications
27 April 2012
Research Proposal

What is the Impact of Stress on University Students Academic Performance?

1. EXPLANATION OF RESEARCH TOPIC

1.1 Purposes of Research Topic
Newth (2011) claims that modern day stress seems to be more widespread than ever causing interference with human intellect, emotional and interpersonal functioning. Therefore; I suggest that students will encounter stress and it will impact their academic performance. In this fast pace and performance driven society each organization needs well performing people. The only way we will know what people require to become productive and less stressed is to explore topics as my research question. The topic will explore many correlating factors to causes of stress and effects of stress. Once these factors are known it will become simple to counter this pandemic. Taking that into account, this study will aim to test whether there is a correlation between a student’s amount of known stress within a semester at university and the students obtained academic average in that same semester. The study will make use of a sample consisting of forty university students. The students will be asked to complete a survey, including the observed stress scale. Newth (2011) “This is not a sexist observation, but a simple fact. A typical man is much less likely than a typical woman to face up to being stressed and therefore is less likely to do anything about it” ( pg.10 ). In response to this the students will also be asked to complete forms stating their demographics, asking questions such as age and gender in the hoping that I will gather findings to whether this claim is sound in every scenario or not. The students will have to convey their marks and averages of the previous semester. This is required in order for the study to identify themes of the students performance related to the stressors and to formulate possible measures to reduce it. The students will be asked to read a list of possible stress factors, for example not getting enough sleep, and to rank these factors in order of importance. This study will ultimately aim to find a correlation between the total on the observed stress scale and the obtained academic average of the students. The study will present any findings on stress factors, sleep, social activities and main contributors consistent with other research that impacts the student’s academic average. 1.2 Background

I will conduct my study in a sample of forty university students at TSiBA Education, Pinelands, which is a non-profit private business university. TSiBA Education has four levels of students; 1) students who are completing a higher certificate which would give them entry into the degree programme 2) first year degree students 3) second year degree students 4) final year degree students, each of which comes with its own complexities. Each particular category of students compromises of females and male. The men are aged between eighteen to their early forties; the woman are in the age group of eighteen to early fifties. They reside in areas within Cape Town. They start each day with lectures early morning (1 hour and 30 minutes – 2hours lectures) until late afternoon at campus, often they attend meeting around campus ad partake in various co-curricular activities. I will attend several of these lectures and meetings three mornings a week for two weeks, and will stay on to observe their work and class performance for approximately 10 hours during the two week period. My key focus will be on their interaction in lectures, although I will also observe and enquires about interactions during their other work. Through this first hand observation of their direct interaction with the courses I will identify their willingness to participate and discern whether they attempt to perform well in class. It will also provide me with the platform to sense their energy...
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