The subjective well-being of first-year tertiary students during an induction programme

Shingairai Chigeza, Johannes H. De Kock, Vera Roos, Marie P. Wissing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This article describes the perceptions of first-year students’ subjective appraisal of ttheir wellbeing before, during and after participation in an induction programme at a higher education institution (HEI). Twenty-two first-year students participated in focus group discussions (fGDs) and semi-structured individual interviews. thematic and interpretative analyses suggested shifts in the students’ levels of well-being: high before, low during, and increased
after the induction programme. Low levels of well-being were linked to experiences of fear, feeling disrespected, and disillusionment with university life, leaders, and a perceived loss of autonomy, independency and social-relatedness. An increase in well-being was associated with social integration, support, the ability for self-reflection and perspective taking. Wellbeing is a relational and collective matter which is embedded in broader contexts. therefore, historical legacies of oppression and inequality should be challenged through constructive debate, involving previously neglected voices intentionally; and creating opportunities for the expression of students’ needs and growth potential.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-35
Number of pages16
JournalAfrica Education Review
Issue number3-4
Early online date7 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2017


  • Well-being
  • induction programmes
  • higher education institution
  • Students
  • positive psychology


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