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Life Satisfaction and Self-Directed Learning willingness among Older Adults
Table of contents
1.2 Purpose ……………………………………………………………..5
1.3 Hypotheses …………………………………………………………6
1.4 Key Term Definitions………………………………………………7
2.0 Review of Literature………………………………………………..8
5.0 Data Collection Procedures…………………………………………11
6.0 Data Analysis……………………………………………………….12
7.0 Concluding Remarks………………………………………………..13
It will be realized that life satisfaction has actually been one of the crucial areas of emphasis for the past decades. Questions in relation to the social, psychological, economic as well as the physical status especially for the older adults have actually served either indirectly or directly as the principal focus in most of the researches of the aging population. This type of questions have truly augmented the understanding towards the problems and processes that revolve around the aging group which in turn has resulted to the establishment of strategies that are fully designed in view of taking advantage of the potential in future. Self-directed learning, on the other hand, has actually created substantial interest in the literature of the adult education which has been necessitated by the self-directed learning readiness scale (Guglielmino & Murdick, 1997). Self-directed learning readiness scale (SDLRS) is a type of scale that is designed so as to measure the willingness or readiness of a person towards self-directed learning.
According to Hiemstra (1975), argued that there was a strong relationship that existed between the predilection for presuming individual control over age and learning after studying the learning projects of several older adults. It will be noted that this was further supported by McCoy, et al. (1992). Through their study, they established that there existed a positive relationship sandwiched between SDLRS scores and age. Barlow (2011) reveals that life satisfaction can actually be improved through learning efforts clearly implying that it is very crucial to determine whether the willingness and propensity towards self-directed learning has a functional relationship to life satisfaction measures. The intention of this research proposal is to truly examine whether such relationships exist.
1.1 Problem Statement
In respect to the discussion carried above one is likely to discover a two-fold problem which will essentially act as the departure point for the current investigation. One of the key problem areas is that several older adults experience various obstacles that are capable of impacting their entire condition of wellbeing. It will be recognized that some of the adults are capable of overcoming these obstacles through self-learning attempts although others get themselves being less equipped to deal with such impediments.
Another key problem area entails understanding the reason why most people are geared at learning so as to meet their personal needs whereas others are not. It will thus be documented that these prevailing variances that lounge within the heart of the problem areas that are actually proposed for this particular study. Therefore if a relationship is able to be set up between an attitude favorable to self-directedness towards learning and life satisfaction then it is possible to view self-directed learning as one of the strategies aimed at promoting a elevated quality of life amongst people who are at their later years.
The rationale of this study is basically to investigate methods in which the perceptions of the older adults as self-directed novices relate with the level of satisfaction ascribed towards their lives. The study will therefore be focused on two main objectives:
- To find out extend to which life satisfaction components coalesce with chosen demographic variables in order to predict the degree of self-directed willingness of the people.
- To find out the relationship stuck between individual willingness for self-directed learning and life satisfaction.
The specific objective that revolves around this study will be geared at examining the various substantive and methodological considerations in revising self-directed learning.
Two main hypothesis will be developed that will help during the analysis of the data. It is actually hypothesized that life satisfaction perceptions will be truly related to the self-directed learning willingness perceptions within a sample of the older adults. The people who give a high life satisfaction level will be likely to have superior self-directed readiness perceptions whereas low satisfaction will in fact be related to low self-directed willingness. This implies that it will be possible to forecast the degree of self-directed willingness of the individuals by determining their score on entire life satisfaction and key factors identified as hurdles to taking part in adult education within the older adults like gender and age. Lastly, it is precisely hypothesized that people from a community sample will essentially tend to reveal superior self-directed willingness as well as life satisfaction unlike those obtained from an institutionalized setting.
1.4 Key Term Definitions
Older Adult – based on this research proposal, older adult will be defined as any person with an age of at least 65 years.
Life Satisfaction – It refers to a self reported appraisal of an individual’s entire psychosocial well-being which is a combination of social-related factors, financial security, perceived health as well as personality factors like self-concept and mood.
Self-Directed Learning willingness – it refers to the degree in which people perceive themselves to posses the skills as well as attitudes required to be an effectual self-directed learner and in this proposed study it measured through SDLRS (Guglielmino & Murdick, 1997).
Self-Directed Learning – it is a process through which people take the initiative without or with the assistance from the other parties in assessing learning outcomes, implementing and choosing suitable learning strategies, identifying material and human resources for use in learning, devising learning goals and diagnosing their needs in learning.
2.0 Review of Literature
It is very crucial to point out that quality of life is in fact an issue that is pertinent to people of all ages. Cantrill (1965) clearly studied the quality of life in the midst of persons in at least a dozen states at different development stages. The researchers in United States extend to reveal that the social research institute which is in Michigan University has embarked on extensive efforts in learning the quality of life (Campbell, Converse, & Rodgers, 1976; Shek, Chan & Lee, 2005).
Life Satisfaction definition
In order to understand life satisfaction meaning as used in the research proposal it required that one ought to understand the related concepts. According to Wang (2011) life satisfaction may refer to the maintenance directed towards the middle-age activities, a sensation of happiness in one’s life, a sensation of satisfaction that revolves around the present status of an individual as well as his activities and as a style of life which is socially desirable. Wellbeing is in most cases associated with life satisfaction although they are somehow different because well being refers to the common emotional experience of the older adults based on a positive negative continuum. This makes life satisfaction to be viewed as an appraisal of the overall psychosocial of the individuals’ well being.
Approaches for Measuring Life Satisfaction
Several measures for life satisfaction have been developed since 1949. One of the earliest measures of older adults well being which focused on personal judgment was known as Your Activities and Attitudes. It was rather an extensive survey of the types of the concerns and activities that several individuals devote their attitudes and energies towards happiness, health, friends and family (Burgess & Havighurst, 1949). Kutner Morale Scale was another earliest approach that was used in measuring life satisfaction (Kutner & Fanshel, 1956). Based on this scale, individuals were inquired to provide their responses in respect with seven morale-related questions where points were scored for the correct responses. Life Satisfaction Index A has been a predominant method of measuring life satisfaction (Sirgy, 2001). This was actually a 20-item scale in which the subjects were either asked to disagree or agree as the only responses expected from them. As a result of the interviews from the individuals using this approach several factors were established that constituted life satisfaction. They extend to include mood tone, self-concept, congruence between achieved and desired goals, fortitude and resolution and apathy vs. zest.
It will be documented that self-directed learning is not a new concept in the adult education although it emerged as key research focus since 1970’s. Generally, the
Self-directed learning is by no means a new concept to adult education; yet it only began to emerge as a major research focus in the field since the early 1970’s. The groundwork on which the self-directed learning remains sustained is normally linked with the humanistic psychology and philosophy principles.
A multiplicity of approaches for the past periods has been employed to study the phenomenon of self-directed learning. These studies are capable of being categorized as either self-directed willingness, qualitative or learning projects (Kelly, 2008)
It will be recognized that life satisfaction for the past decades has been an essential area of study being carried out by several sociologists and psychologists. As a result of this link that necessitates quality of life several studies have seen the exploration of the life satisfaction to be prolific. Due to its difficulties in definition, researchers examines life satisfaction as a multidimensional and unidimensional phenomenon, psychosocial and social phenomenon, an indicator of current as well as lifetime wellbeing and as a subjective and objective measure. The efforts in learning have been indicated as having a link with life satisfaction although the precise association is not comprehensible.
The purpose of this part is to illustrate the methodology that is anticipated in the research proposal. This section will entail descriptions revolving around the study setting, study sample, proposed methods of data collection, analysis efforts as well as proposed research design.
The study setting will thus entail all individuals residing in two settings. It will first capture a residential home of the adults within Syracuse in New York. This adult home is truly a long term facility where people require minimal assistance. The second type of setting is a housing project for the senior citizens which is near Syracuse and the residents do not require any external support, live on their own and are all retired. These two settings provide an older adults’ sample in a confined geographic area hence facilitating data collection.
Ex post facto type of research design will be used in the proposed study. It refers to a systematic form of empirical inquiry where the researcher does not have direct variable control (Kerlinger (1973). The plan of the study will highly involve collecting information on the self-directed learning willingness or readiness and life satisfaction.
Sampling Plan and Population
It will be documented that an adult home does not imply to a heath care facility instead it is a residential setting for most of the older adults who are independent in need of minimal services. A random sample will in point of fact be drawn from the residents lists obtained for the settings. A random numbers’ table will be used where the individuals’ names will be chosen from each setting.
5.0 Data Collection Procedures
According to this research two instruments will be used to measure one dependent variable, three moderator variables and one independent variable.
It will be further recognized that life satisfaction is the independent variable within this study and will in fact be measured through the “Salamon-Conte Life Satisfaction in the Elderly Scale” (SCLSES) which focuses on various daily living aspects such as self-concept, considering life to be important and taking contentment in daily activities.
Self-directed willingness or readiness happens to the dependent variable within this study which is measured through SDLRS. This measure is the most appropriate for identifying the variance across the older adults’ population.
Apart from the dependent and independent variables, moderator variables will also be considered in this study. A moderator variable is a factor that is selected, manipulated or measured by the researcher so as to find out whether it alters the relationship that exist between the independent variable and an observed phenomenon (Tuckman, 1978). The moderator variables in our case here extend to include gender, age as well as residential status.
Data Gathering Plans
A simple form of instruction sheet that inquires subjects their gender and age will actually be delivered to the administrator in every setting who has agreed to issue and collect the complete it. Before the instruments and instruction sheets are distributed, the respective administrators and researchers will send an introduction letter to the chosen subjects through mails pleading for cooperation. Telephone numbers will be provided for those with additional questions to be given assistance.
6.0 Data Analysis
Several types of data analysis are proposed to be used within this study. In order to provide sample description from which the data was gathered then descriptive information on residential setting, gender and age will be clearly described together with the modes, standard deviations, range and means for the SCLSES and SDLRS scores. The coefficients of the Pearson product moment correlation will be determined so as to determine the relationship between SCLSES and SDLRS. Thirdly, the difference within these scores as well as the moderator variables will be determined by examining the analysis of variance, t-tests and chi-square tests.
The specific hypotheses that will be tested are listed below in a null form:
- There is actually no considerable relationship stuck between self-directed learning willingness and life satisfaction which will be tested by use of Pearson correlation coefficient.
- There is no considerable difference in self-directed learning willingness or readiness and life satisfaction according to the age. The most appropriate tests to be employed here is the analysis of variance and t-test.
- There is no considerable difference in self-directed learning willingness or readiness and in life satisfaction between residential background subjects and adult home where a chi-square test will be carried out for variable.
- There is actually no considerable difference in self-directed learning willingness and in life satisfaction based on gender. Chi-square test is most appropriate test for this hypothesis.
The hypotheses developed above will be tested at a minimum 5% significance level.
7.0 Concluding Remarks
It is projected that this study will precisely create significant contributions towards adult education areas. The study is expected to expand the base of knowledge of the self-directed learning. This study will also utilize by the SDLRS by use of sample of older adults residing in residential and institutional settings. Lastly, the eventual issue underlying this proposed study is the quality of life. The study will be aimed at identifying ways by which education is capable of enhancing quality life to several people at the old ages.
Several limitations have been identified in this proposed study. It will be actually limited when it comes to its generalization to the entire older adult populace. This is because the older adults are a heterogeneous population hence some older population segments may fail to be included in the sample. In addition, the dependent as well as the independent variables are measured as perceptions of the subjects and not their actual behaviors.
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