Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Background and rationale

Background and rationale of this model which supports the ongoing development of students’ academic confidence at various points throughout the semester.

Resilience is both a key graduate attribute and an integral part of any transitions framework as it enables students to better cope with the challenges that they will encounter on their own unique learning journey. The term ‘resilience’ can be applied to both academic and social/personal aspects of the student journey and is often equated with ‘wellbeing’.

Whilst resilience in academic and social spheres is often closely related, the type of resilience that this toolkit focuses on building is perhaps better described as ‘academic buoyancy’ (Martin and Marsh, 2008) or ‘academic confidence’ (Sander and Sanders, 2003).

This particular model of resilience in an academic sphere also links to the literature on personal epistemologies (Brownlee et al., 2009; Rodrigues et al., 2006; Kaartinen-Koutaniemi et al., 2008; Nieminen et al., 2004) as “‘resilient’ or ‘higher order thinking’ is also about challenging factual and fixed knowledge, dualistic styles of thinking (‘right or wrong’ reciting content) as well as overcoming conventional notions of the learner as mere consumer of knowledge” (Caruana et al., 2012, p. 3).