|Year : 2023 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 106-111
Effectiveness of self-reflection enhancement strategy on self-concept and skill of coping with stress among upper primary school students
M N. Mohamedunni Alias Musthafa, Manoj Kumar Dewtwal, Rini E Stephen
Department of Education, Central University of Kerala, Kasaragod, Kerala, India
|Date of Submission||28-Oct-2022|
|Date of Acceptance||11-Apr-2023|
|Date of Web Publication||29-Aug-2023|
Prof. M N. Mohamedunni Alias Musthafa
Department of Education, Central University of Kerala, Periya, Kasaragod - 671 320, Kerala
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Introduction: Swami Vivekananda is the symbol of the self-concept who has propagated the Indian Knowledge System in western countries. His life philosophy become more relevant during the pandemic period when people are distressed due to various adversities. In the present study, a strategy was developed based on the philosophy and methodology of Swami Vivekananda to improve the self-concept and skill of coping with stress among upper primary school students. Materials and Methods: 240 sixth-standard students were selected as the sample. Students were allotted four classes and two classes were randomly assigned as the experimental group and two as the control group. Assessments were done using the Self-Concept Rating Scale (SCRS) and The Pandemic Stress Coping Scale (PSCS). The experiment group was treated with the Self-Reflection Enhancement Strategy (SRES) for one month. Discussion: The experimental groups have improved their self-concept P =0.05) and stress coping skills (P =0.05) compared to the control group. Conclusion: The Self-Reflection Enhancement Strategy is found to be very much effective in enhancing the self-concept and coping skills among students.
Keywords: Coping with stress, self-concept, Self-Reflection Enhancement Strategy
|How to cite this article:|
Alias Musthafa M N, Dewtwal MK, Stephen RE. Effectiveness of self-reflection enhancement strategy on self-concept and skill of coping with stress among upper primary school students. J Appl Conscious Stud 2023;11:106-11
|How to cite this URL:|
Alias Musthafa M N, Dewtwal MK, Stephen RE. Effectiveness of self-reflection enhancement strategy on self-concept and skill of coping with stress among upper primary school students. J Appl Conscious Stud [serial online] 2023 [cited 2023 Oct 4];11:106-11. Available from: http://www.jacsonline.in/text.asp?2023/11/2/106/384452
| Introduction|| |
The world has been passing through a great dilemma due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID pandemic for the past 2 years. This has not only caused physiological problems but also affected the psychological state and behavior patterns of individuals. It is evident from the reports of the World Health Organization (2021) that the pandemic has created stress in the minds of people, especially young children. The sudden shift from a regular classroom to an online learning environment had an effect on their education, and the majority of children's anxiety about school led to stress and other problems (Coman et al., 2020). Being young children, many of them did not have any ideas regarding how to manage their stress. This, in turn, affected the development of their self-concept.
Self-concept is how we see our behaviors, talents, and distinctive qualities. It is developed over time from early childhood to adulthood. Self-concept is made up of three different parts: ideal self, self-image, and self-esteem (Rogers Carl., 1959). The ideal self is constituted by characteristics to which the individual aspires. It is the guide of self. It is whom we envision ourselves to be. Self-image is how we see ourselves at this moment in time. Self-image can be influenced by the physical traits, characteristics, and social roles of the individual. Self-esteem is how we accept and value ourselves through objective assessments (Cherry Kendra., 2022). Multiple dimensions for self-concept consist of six independent traits: academic, affect, competence, family, physical, and social dimensions (Bruce A. Bracken, 1992).
| Need and Significance of the Study|| |
Childhood is the most crucial period for the formation of many psychological underpinnings. Around this time, several personality qualities, such as self-concept, begin to develop. Self-concept begins to form in early infancy. Childhood experiences serve as the foundation for self-concept formation. Similarly, the ability to deal with stress is another crucial talent that a person develops from infancy and continues to hone throughout life. Psychologists note that childhood experience and exposure will impact the formation of self-concept and stress management abilities. Swami Vivekananda, the young idol of our nation, saw self-concept as the most essential attribute to be cultivated in persons in order to recognize their inner potential and use it to the utmost.
Young children are struggling to handle the stress brought on by academic, family, and sociological factors, according to several studies conducted throughout the world (Zurlo et al., 2020; Spinelli et al., 2020; Barrot et al., 2021; Copeland et al., 2021.) The skill of coping with stress is an important skill to be developed to handle the stress of everyday life. It is a core life skill proposed by the World Health Organization. Coping skills are essential, especially in a pandemic time. Nevertheless, during the pandemic, this development did not occur in the majority of youngsters for a variety of reasons. In this regard, it is vital to further explore the self-concept inside a population undergoing lockdown measures, uncovers the true state of things within this population, and be able to assist successfully. Special interventions for the betterment of the student's self-concept and stress management skills will be beneficial in this context. The present intervention is an attempt to empower young students with a well-sequenced strategy based on the philosophy and methodology of Swami Vivekananda.
The prime objectives of the study are as follows:
- To identify the level of self-concept and skills of coping with stress during pandemic periods among upper primary school students using appropriate psychological tools
- To design and develop a Self-Reflection Enhancement Strategy (SRES) based on the Philosophy of Swami Vivekananda
- To find out the effectiveness of the strategy in terms of self-concept and skill of coping with stress among upper primary school students.
Some assumptions related to the variables and the study sample were also formulated by the researchers. It was assumed that there is no significant difference in the initial status of variables Self-Concept and Skill of Coping with Stress among the experimental and control groups and that after the treatment with the strategy, the experimental group improved in their skill of coping with stress and self-concept.
| Methodology of the Study|| |
The present study was intended to assess the self-concept and skill of coping with the stress level among upper primary students and check the effectiveness of the strategy developed based on Vivekananda's philosophy and methodology for enhancing self-concept and stress-coping skills among students.
Population and sample for the study
Upper primary school students were selected for the study because due to COVID pandemic time schools were closed. In the present study, 240 students studying in the sixth standard at Government Basic U P School were selected as the sample. Students were allotted to four classes among which two classes were randomly assigned (randomization done by random number table) as the experimental group and two classes as the control group in the same school. These 240 students were divided into two groups: experimental and control groups of 120 samples each in the month of August 2021.
Pretest–posttest nonequivalent group design
For the present study, pretest and posttest, nonequivalent group design was adopted. Both the control group and experimental group were taken as intact. No specific treatment has been made to make the group absolutely homogenous. The pretest is administered to all the groups using appropriate tools to assess the student's level of self-concept and skills of coping with stress. After the pretest, the experimental group was treated with the strategy developed based on Vivekananda's philosophy and methodology. The intervention period was 3 months. For the control group, no specific treatment was given. After 1 month, a posttest was administered to assess the level of self-concept and skill of coping with stress.
| Tools Used for the Study|| |
The following tools were used for data collection:
- Self-Concept Rating Scale (SCRS) by Musthafa and Rini (2022)
- The Pandemic Stress Coping Scale by Musthafa and Rini (2022)
- SRES (2023) by Musthafa and Manoj (2022) [Figure 1].
Self-Concept Rating Scale and Pandemic Stress Coping Scale
To measure the level of self-concept of the elementary school students, a five-point Likert scale was prepared and standardized by the investigators. The Saraswat (1984) Self-Concept Questionnaire and the Academic Self-Concept Scale for Adolescents (Minchekar, 2019) were both used while creating the scale's items. In the draft scale, 69 items are prepared. The responses range from strongly agree to strongly disagree to the statements as followed by (Likert, 1932) in his summated rating technique of attitude measurement. Both positive and negative items are prepared and scored accordingly. When it comes to the affirmative questions, the respondents firmly concur that they should receive a score of 5, however when it comes to the negative things, the scores are in reverse. 9 items removed after item analysis, 9 items were eliminated. The Cronbach's alpha value of the scale is 0.76 suggesting high reliability and internal consistency. Construct validity of the scale was ensured during the preparation.
Similarly, the Pandemic Stress Coping Scale for elementary school students was also developed to assess the stress coping skills among students during the pandemic time. Before finalizing the items for the scale, the Robust-Pandemic Coping Scale developed by Burro et al. (2021) was referred to understand the new trends. Five-point Likert scale with 58 items was prepared and the Cronbach's alpha value of the scale is 0.68. Construct validity was ensured during the preparation and standardization of the scale. Essential psychometric properties such as validity, reliability, and objectivity have been established by Cronbach's alpha.
Main features of the Self-Reflection Enhancement Strategy
To develop the SRES, the investigators reviewed studies related to the self-concept and self-reflection of young students. It has been noted that Swami Vivekananda's views of the concept of self are highly influential.
The strategy was evaluated by using an evaluation pro forma. Inter-rated reliability was used for the standardization procedure. The evaluation pro forma is a five-point Likert scale having 10 statements about the SRES and responses were rated. Five experts were selected for the evaluation and their responses were analyzed qualitatively.
The SRES was developed based on the philosophy and methodology of Swami Vivekananda to enhance students' self-concept as well as cope up with adversities and stress. Swamiji is the symbol of the IKS and is considered the youth icon. His life was a great model for resilience and self-concept. He followed a unique methodology to propagate his thoughts and philosophy.
There are four phases involved in the strategy. All the phases are developed based on Vivekananda's philosophy and methodology. The strategy is planned for 40 min of intervention per day, and each phase is given a specific time to accomplish. A brief description of each phase is given below.
Phase 1: Meditation and concentration
In the present strategy, the first phase is meditation and pranayama. Students were taught to practice meditation and how to concentrate their thoughts. Being beginners, students need more care and support for doing meditation. Through regular practice of meditation, students can feel the inner voice and concentrate more on every element of life.
Phase 2: Lecture
After meditation, a short lecture regarding the areas to be improved in developing a positive self-concept and skills for coping with stress is given in a sequential way considering the components of each variable. The lecture included life events and stories of Swamiji to show how he handled adverse life situations with his willpower. Thought-provoking lecturing was given to make students a comprehensive understanding of the variables. This experimental process of study occurs within the Senior Basic School Government, Kumbla, Kasaragod, Kerala.
Phase 3: Discussion
The third phase is an open discussion to share their life experience on the subject whatever the intervention and get their opinions and suggestion. A free and healthy discussion atmosphere is created to make students more comfortable expressing what is there in their minds. The teacher makes timely support to deviate from the area of discussion. Through the discussion, students got a clear idea regarding the similar issues faced by their peers and how to manage them. The teacher consolidates the main points after every discussion and makes the points more specific and clear for the students.
Phase 4: Self-learning
The final phase is the self-learning of the students. Through all the preceding phases, students comprehend the concept and then internalized what they understood and how to execute it in their life situations. In Swamiji's vision, learning is the liberation from undesirable predispositions and ignorance about one's real “Self.”
| Procedure of Study|| |
For the present study, 240 upper primary students studying in the sixth standard were selected as the sample and randomly assigned into experimental and control groups. One hundred and twenty students were treated in the experimental group and 120 students in the control group. To the experimental group, treatment was given based on a developed strategy, and for the control group, no specific treatment was given in this regard. After 3 months of intervention, a posttest was given to assess the level of students and to find out the effectiveness of the developed strategy. The tools used to assess the self-concept were the SCRS to measure the self-concept of elementary school students and the Pandemic Stress Coping Scale standardized by the investigators. Independent sample t-tests and paired sample t-tests were used to analyze the initial level of the variables and the level after the intervention. Interpretation of statistical results was done to check the effectiveness of the developed strategy on self-concept and skills of coping with stress among upper primary school students.
| Analysis and Interpretation of Results|| |
An independent sample t-test was used to compare the means of the experimental and control groups in the first phase of the analysis, which was divided into two parts. In the second phase after the intervention, the mean scores of the experimental and control groups were analyzed using both independent sample t-tests as well as paired sample t-tests to understand the effectiveness of the strategy. The pretest score and posttest score of the self-concept and skills of coping with stress for the experimental and control groups are presented in [Table 1].
Comparison of mean pretest scores of the variable self-concept among the experimental and control groups
The mean pretest scores of both the experimental and control groups were analyzed using an independent sample t-test to understand the initial status of self-concept among both the groups.
It is clear from the table that the t value is less than the table value and the P > 0.01. Hence, no significant differences were found in the mean scores of pretests of the variable self-concept and skills of coping with stress among the experimental and control groups. Hence, it can be understood that the initial status of the experimental and control groups was almost equal.
From the table, it is clear that there exists a significant difference in the mean posttest scores of the experimental and control groups. The higher mean score value belongs to the experimental group. Hence, it can understand that experimental groups are better than the control group in their level of self-concept and coping with stress after the intervention.
From the results, it is clear that there exists a significant difference in the mean posttest scores of the experimental and control groups. The higher mean score value belongs to the experimental group. Hence, it can understand that experimental groups are better than the control group in their level of coping with stress after the intervention.
Comparison of mean pretest and posttest scores of the variable self-concept and skill of coping with stress experimental group and control group
After the intervention, the mean pretest and posttest scores of the experimental groups were analyzed using a paired sample t-test to understand the change in the mean scores of the experimental group. The mean scores of posttests are significantly high compared to the pretest scores of experimental groups. The gain score indicates the effectiveness of the developed strategy SRES on self-concept and skills of coping with stress among upper primary school students. From all the results, it was clear that the mean scores of the posttest and pretest scores of the control groups have no significant difference.
| Discussion and Conclusion|| |
From the results, it is clear that the developed SRES based on Swami Vivekananda's philosophy was effective in enhancing the skill of coping with stress and self-concept among students. The experimental group improved far better than the control group and the gain score also affirm the same. According to the findings of the research, young pupils' coping abilities and self-concepts may be enhanced to the maximum extent with the right training and direction.
The learning state of the upper primary students is the best suitable stage for assimilation. Anything can be taught to any child at any stage if it is presented in an intellectually honest way (Bruner, 1960). However, the pedagogical practice that is remaining is a kind of rhetoric impositions rather than taking the spirit from the IKS (2021). The learner is not provided any chance for contemplation and reflection. Our pedagogical approaches must stress the integrity and divinity of the individual learner and provide learning experiences for self-reflective strategies as discussed. This should start from the primary schooling stage itself. Education is a process rather than a result, a process of forming the mind rather than informing the mind. There should be experiential and experimental approaches by educational practitioners taking conceptual inputs from the rich Indian educational tradition.
Integration of Swamiji's life story and philosophy into the curriculum is the need of time in this materialistic world (Sirswal and Islam, 2013). The present study was an attempt to increase the mental strength of students through the methods of including meditation, lecturing, discussion, and self-learning. In the post-pandemic period, when the school system is officially back in operation, students feel stressed about taking tutoring to compensate for their content knowledge. The students lacked during the online education mode during the pandemic period. Concerted efforts should be there to boost the self of the tender learners to empower their morale and confidence. The strategy experimented with and validated by the investigators is an innovative intervention that can be extended and used as a mentoring tool for enhancing self-concept and promoting coping skills among the learners. The strategy has been tested and validated by investigators as an innovative intervention that can be extended and used as a mentoring tool to improve self perception and promote interpersonal skills. vice in learners. The integration of the Indian Knowledge System (IKS) into teaching activities at all levels, this kind of pedagogical experimentation should be encouraged. Researchers in the field of education as well as social science can do much for achieving this goal by exploring Swamiji's methodology and integrating them with innovative practices.
Limitations of this study
The study time was limited to 3 months and the sample was delimited to upper primary school students studying in the government school.
Future suggestions for further research
- It is recommended the study can be further done in a large sample size so the result may give more generalization
- The present study is delimited to upper primary students. This can be extended to a higher level like high school and university students
- Other important life skills also can be studied in a similar manner.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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