n South African Journal of Education - Identifying resilient and non-resilient middle-adolescents in a formerly black-only urban school

Volume 26, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0256-0100
  • E-ISSN: 2076-3433



The aim in this study was to develop a way of identifying resilient and non-resilient middle-adolescents in a formerly black-only urban residential (township) school, in order to ultimately support the development of learners' resilience under stressful circumstances. A Resilience Scale was developed to screen for resilient and non-resilient learners by means of self-evaluation. A Learning Behaviour Scale was developed to examine the ability of the teachers to reliably recognise learners' resilient and non-resilient academic and social behaviours. As a control, in-depth interviews were conducted, to evaluate the construct validity of results on the two scales qualitatively and to identify themes signifying resilience and non-resilience in the coping behaviour of middle-adolescents in a township school. The participants were 190 learners in Grade 8 and 9 who all completed the Resilience Scale, 12 learners selected on the basis of their Resilience Scale scores who were interviewed, and eight curricular teachers who completed the Learning Behaviour Scale in respect o f the 12 selected learners. All the items of the Resilience Scale proved statistically reliable. However, the interview data profile differed from the Resilience Scale profile in the lower range, suggesting that the scale failed to reliably reflect non-resilience in the context of a formerly black-only urban school. The results on the Learning Behaviour Scale differed from both learner-based data sets, suggesting that the teachers were wholly unable to identify resilience and non-resilience in their learners.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error