Socio-psychological and health-related factors behind plans of university students going abroad
Socio-psychological and health-related factors behind plans of university students going abroad
Východiská: Vzťah medzi ekonomickými motívmi a plánmi opustiť krajinu pôvodu boli doposiaľ relatívne uspokojivo preskúmané, avšak vzťahom medzi týmito plánmi a sociálno-psychologickými faktormi a faktormi súvisiacimi so zdravím do toho času nebola venovaná až taká výskumná pozornosť.
Cieľ: Cieľom tohto výskumu bolo zistiť, či sociálno-psychologické faktory (konkrétne vnímaná sociálna opora zo strany rodiny, priateľov a významných osôb a osobnostné faktory podľa päťfaktorového modelu) a faktory súvisiace so zdravím (špecificky zažívanie depresívnych symptómov a rizikové správanie) súvisia s plánmi odísť do zahraničia u vysokoškolských študentov.
Metódy: Na analýzy boli použite dáta zo štúdie SLiCE (Student Life Cohort in Europe), ktorá bola realizovaná online v piatich európskych krajinách – Nemecku, Litve, Maďarsku, Slovenskej republike a Českej republike. Plány odísť do zahraničia boli identifikované otázkou umožňujúcou zistiť, či študenti plánujú opustiť Slovensko v horizonte nasledujúcich dvoch rokov. Kvôli dichotomickej povahe tejto závislej premennej bola aplikovaná logistická regresia na preskúmanie podielu faktorov ovplyvňujúcich plány odísť do zahraničia, pri kontrole vplyvu krajiny a pohlavia.
Výsledky: 15,3% študentov uviedlo plán opustiť Slovensko počas nasledujúcich dvoch rokov (pričom 85% študentov tvorili študenti prvého ročníka vysokej školy). Finálny regresný model za účasti faktorov vnímanej sociálnej opory, depresivity, so zdravím-súvisiaceho správania a osobnostných faktorov vysvetlil 21,5% variancie v plánoch odísť do zahraničia a ukázal, že vyššia vnímaná sociálna opora zo strany priateľov, nižšia vnímaná sociálna opora zo strany rodiny, ďalej vyššia úroveň zažívaných depresívnych príznakov, vyššia úroveň konzumácie alkoholu, nižšia úroveň závislosti od alkoholu a napokon vyššia otvorenosť voči skúsenosti sú vo vzťahu s udávanými plánmi odísť do zahraničia u vysokoškolských študentov.
Záver: Zistenia naznačujú, že sociálno-psychologické a so zdravím súvisiace faktory sa podieľajú na vysvetlení plánov opustiť svoju krajinu a odísť do zahraničia u vysokoškolských študentov.
Background: According to the Statistical Office of the Slovak Republic the educational status of Slovak emigrants is most frequently at the level of secondary school, followed by those with university education. It is estimated that about a third of university graduates leave Slovakia every year. Many findings show that people with a high quality education have a tendency to leave their country to go to different European countries or countries outside Europe for reasons of work or a higher quality of life. This is the reason why countries which are experiencing problems with the brain drain phenomenon are very interested in its exploration. The relationship between economic motives and plans to leave the country of origin has been relatively well examined. However, the relationship between motives and plans to leave abroad and socio-psychosocial and health-related factors has not been sufficiently explored. The factors which affect this decision-making process and intention formation can be different and vary extensively. Relevant factors include social relationships and other social variables which influence migration intentions and behaviour. It has been shown that there are certain personal dispositions which seem to predispose a person to manifest a higher desire to leave or show more effort to leave. The findings showed that migrating persons differ from non-migrants in characteristics which include personality factors, personal attitudes as well as health-related behaviour and risk behaviour. Regarding risk behaviour among migrating people, there was a significantly higher level of regular smokers and a higher level of alcohol use than among non-migrating people.
While respecting the findings that economic reasons are the strongest explanatory factors of migration in general, we were interested whether selected socio-psychological factors, as well as health- related factors, can help to understand why young people leave abroad.
Objectives: The goal of this work is to explore the strength of a proposed model and explore the contribution of social support, health related behaviour, and personality factors in the planning of going abroad among university students. In other words, to examine whether perceived social support, depressive symptoms, health-related behaviour and personality factors are related to the plans among university students to leave their countries.
Method: This study is based on the data obtained in the study SLiCE (Student Life Cohort in Europe) conducted online and it presents the analysis of data from the first wave of data collection in 2011 in cooperation with the universities in five European countries. The sample consisted of 2051 university students, of which 343 (16.6%) was from the Czech Republic, 862 (41.7%) from Lithuania, 114 (5.5%) from Hungary, 264 (12.8%) from Germany and 482 (23.3%) from Slovakia. Most of the students in the sample (85%) were students in the first year of university study and 70.2% of the sample were women. The mean age of the respondents was 20.67 with a standard deviation of 2.71.
An online questionnaire was used to measure the variables. Plans to go abroad were identified by a single item measure assessing whether students had a plan to leave for abroad in the period of the following two years, social support was measured by MSPSS (The Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support), depression was measured by the M-BDI (Modified version of the Beck Depression Inventory), alcohol use was measured by a screening tool for alcohol use AUDIT (The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test), smoking was measured by a question about the number of days during the previous month in which respondents smoked cigarettes and, finally, personality factors were measures by a shortened version of the Big Five questionnaire, the TIPI (Ten Item Personality measure).
Due to the binary nature of the dependent variable, a binary logistic regression was used to explore the factors influencing plans to go abroad and allowed adjusting for country and gender.
Results: Having a plan to leave abroad in the following two years was reported by 15.3% of respondents. The regression model in the first step included variables of social support, depression, risk behaviour (alcohol use and frequency of smoking) and explained 19.2% of variance in planning to leave abroad. In the next step, personality factors extraversion, openness to experience, conscientiousness, emotional lability and agreeableness were added. The model significantly improved in prediction effectiveness and this final regression model explained 21.5% of the variance in planning to leave abroad. The final regression model classified correctly 85.4% of cases.
Perceived social support was found to be significantly related to whether students have or do not have a plan for going abroad. Social support from the family supports the plan not to go abroad, while social support from friends has the opposite effect and works as a factor which supports the plan to go abroad. Experiencing depressive symptoms is related to a higher probability that students plan to go abroad. Certain forms of risk behaviour can be related to planning to go abroad and our study showed that a higher use of alcohol or hazardous drinking is related to a higher probability of planning to go abroad, while alcohol dependence was related to the opposite phenomenon i.e. the probability of not planning to leave. Personality traits contributed to the explained variance in planning to go abroad, while in our sample a positive relationship between openness to experience and probability of planning to leave was found.
Conclusion: The model has proven to be significant and relevant for explaining the variance in planning among university students to go abroad.. The explored socio-psychological factors, as well as health-related factors, were found to contribute to the explained variance in this. The findings indicate that socio-psychological and health-related factors are related to the plans to go abroad. In summary, students who perceive to have less support from their family, more support from their friends, experience more depressive symptoms, are more open to new experiences and report higher consumption of alcohol, but not alcohol dependence are more likely to have a plan to leave for abroad within a short timeframe. This research has several limitations, which have been acknowledged and discussed. Our findings and the effort to eliminate the limitations open relevant topics for further research.
Plans to go abroad. Students´ migration. University students. Personality factors. Social support. Risk behaviour.
Bibliografické informácie (sk)
KULANOVÁ, Marta – OROSOVÁ, Oľga. Socio-psychological and health-related factors behind plans of university students going abroad. Človek a spoločnosť [Individual and Society], 2016, roč. 19, č. 4, s. 1-15.
KULANOVÁ, Marta – OROSOVÁ, Oľga. Socio-psychological and health-related factors behind plans of university students going abroad. Človek a spoločnosť [Individual and Society], 2016, Vol. 19, No. 4, pp. 1-15.
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EN: Socio-psychological and health-related factors behind plans of university students going abroad