1. Home
  2. Vol 5, No 1 (2021)
  3. Indani Durrotul Aini

Correlational study on self-compassion and college adjustment among university freshmen during distance learning

  • Abstract Views: 378
  • PDF Downloads: 28
  • December 31, 2021
Corresponding Author


College adjustment; Distance learning; First-year college student; Pandemic Covid-19; Self-compassion


When entering college, first-year students faced new challenges. College adjustment is necessary in the early period of college because it can predict college success. Covid-19 pandemic hinders college adjustment due to distance learning. Meanwhile, a previous study conceptually mentioned that self-compassion supported college adjustment. This study examined the correlation between self-compassion and college adjustment among first-year college students in distance learning during Covid-19 pandemic. Undergraduate students batch 2020 (N = 381) were surveyed using Self-Compassion Scale and Student Adaptation to College Questionnaire. Pearson’s correlation test showed a positive significant correlation between self-compassion and college adjustment. The strongest correlation was found between isolation and personal-emotional adjustment. These findings indicated that self-compassion tends to help a better college adjustment in a distance learning context.

Full Text:


Abdullah, M. C., Elias, H., Mahyuddin, R., & Uli, J. (2014). Adjustment amongst first year students in Malaysian University. European Journal Of Social Sciences, 8(3), 496-505. http://merr.utm.my/id/eprint/4697

Astin, A. W., & Astin, H. S. (2015). Achieving equity in higher education: The unfinished agenda. Journal of College and Character, 16(2), 65–74. https://doi.org/10.1080/2194587X.2015.1024799

Aydin, Y. (2016). Testing a model of psychological inflexibility, ruminative thinking, worry, and self-compassion in relation to college adjustment [Doctoral dissertation]. http://etd.lib.metu.edu.tr/upload/12620101/index.pdf

Baker, R. W., McNeil, O. V., & Siryk, B. (1985). Expectation and reality in freshman adjustment to college. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 32(1), 94-103. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-0167.32.1.94

Baker, R. W., & Siryk, B. (1984). Measuring adjustment to college. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 31(2), 179. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-0167.31.2.179

Baker, R. W., & Siryk, B. (1989). Manual for student adaptation to college questionnaire. Western Psychological Services.

Baker, R. W., & Siryk, B. (1999). SACQ: Student adaptation to college questionnaire: Manual. Western Psychological Services.

Brown, M., Hughes, H., Keppell, M., Hard, N., & Smith, L. (2015). Stories from students in their first semester of distance learning. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 16(4), 1-17. https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v16i4.1647

Bruffaerts, R., Mortier, P., Kiekens, G., Auerbach, R. P., Cuijpers, P., Demyttenaere, K., Green, J. G., Nock, M. K., & Kessler, R. C. (2018). Mental health problems in college freshmen: Prevalence and academic functioning. Journal of Affective Disorders, 225, 97-103. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2017.07.044

Chang, E. C., Yu, T., Najarian, A. S. M., Wright, K. M., Chen, W., Chang, O. D., Du, Y., & Hirsch, J. K. (2017). Understanding the association between negative life events and suicidal risk in college students: Examining self-compassion as a potential mediator. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 73(6), 745–755. https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.22374

Chi, X., Becker, B., Yu, Q., Willeit, P., Jiao, C., Huang, L., Hossain, M. M., Grabovac, I., Yeung, A., Lin, J., Veronese, N., Wang, J., Zhou, X., Doig, S. R., Liu, X., Carvalho, A. F., Yang, L., Xiao, T., Zou, L., … Solmi, M. (2020). Prevalence and psychosocial correlates of mental health outcomes among Chinese college students during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 11. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2020.00803

Clinciu, A. I. (2013). Adaptation and stress for the first year university students. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 78, 718-722. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2013.04.382

Clinciu, A. I., & Cazan, A. M. (2014). Academic adjustment questionnaire for the university students. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 127, 655-660. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.03.330

Credé, M., & Niehorster, S. (2011). Adjustment to college as measured by the student adaptation to college questionnaire: A quantitative review of its structure and relationships with correlates and consequences. Educational Psychology Review, 24(1), 133-165. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10648-011-9184-5

Dancey, C. P., & Reidy, J. (2007). Statistics without maths for psychology. Pearson Education.

Direktorat Jenderal Pendidikan Tinggi. (2020). Surat nomor 631/E.E2/KM/2020 mengenai Panduan Umum Kehidupan Kampus Bagi Mahasiswa Baru (PKKMB) Tahun 2020. Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan. https://dikti.kemdikbud.go.id/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Surat-Pengantar-Panduan-PKKMB-2020.pdf

Dvořáková, K., Greenberg, M. T., & Roeser, R. W. (2019). On the role of mindfulness and compassion skills in students' coping, well-being, and development across the transition to college: A conceptual analysis. Stress and Health, 35(2), 146-156. https://doi.org/10.1002/smi.2850

Fatoni, Arifianti, N., Nurkhayati, E., Nurdiawati, E., Fidziah, Pamungkas, G., Adha, S., Irawan, Purwanto, A., Julyanto, O., & Azizi, E. (2020). University students online learning system during Covid-19 pandemic: Advantages, constraints, and solutions. Systematic Reviews in Pharmacy, 11(7), 570-576. http://www.sysrevpharm.org/fulltext/196-1602175161.pdf

Gillett-Swan, J. (2017). The challenges of online learning: Supporting and engaging the isolated learner. Journal of Learning Design, 10(1), 20-30. https://doi.org/10.5204/jld.v9i3.293

Gravetter, F. J., & Forzano, L. B. (2012). Research methods for the behavioral sciences (4th ed.). Wadsworth.

Gunnell, K. E., Mosewich, A. D., McEwen, C. E., Eklund, R. C., & Crocker, P. R. E. (2017). Don’t be so hard on yourself! Changes in self-compassion during the first year of university are associated with changes in well-being. Personality and Individual Differences, 107, 43-48. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2016.11.032

Hasanah, U., Ludiana, L., Immawati, I., & Livana, P. H. (2020). Psychological Description of Students in the Learning Process During Pandemic Covid-19. Jurnal Keperawatan Jiwa, 8(3), 299-306. https://doi.org/10.26714/jkj.8.3.2020.299-306

Hillstock, L. G., & Havice, P. A. (2014). Exploring characteristics of retained first-year students enrolled in non-proximal distance learning programs. Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice, 15(4), 575–603. https://doi.org/10.2190/CS.15.4.f

Hope, N., Koestner, R., & Milyavskaya, M. (2014). The role of self-compassion in goal pursuit and well-being among university freshmen. Self and Identity, 13(5), 579-593. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298868.2014.889032

Islam, M. A., Barna, S. D., Raihan, H., Khan, M. N. A., & Hossain, M. T. (2020). Depression and anxiety among university students during the Covid-19 pandemic in Bangladesh: A web-based cross-sectional survey. PLOS ONE, 15(8), e0238162. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0238162

Jones, N., & Lau, A. M. S. (2010). Blending learning: widening participation in higher education. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 47(4), 405–416. https://doi.org/10.1080/14703297.2010.518424

Katz, S., & Somers, C. L. (2017). Individual and environmental predictors of college adjustment: Prevention and intervention. Current Psychology, 36(1), 56-65. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-015-9384-0

Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan Republik Indonesia. (2020, 17 Maret). SE Mendikbud: Pembelajaran secara daring Dan Bekerja Dari Rumah untuk Mencegah Penyebaran COVID-19. https://www.kemdikbud.go.id/main/blog/2020/03/se-mendikbud-pembelajaran-secara-daring-dan-bekerja-dari-rumah-untuk-mencegah-penyebaran-covid19

Lazarus, R. S., & Folkman, S. (1984). Stress, appraisal, and coping. Springer Publishing Company.

Lepp, A., Barkley, J. E., Karpinski, A. C., & Singh, S. (2019). College students’ multitasking behavior in online versus face-to-face courses. SAGE Open, 9(1). https://doi.org/10.1177/2158244018824505

Livana, P. H., Mubin, M. F., & Basthomi, Y. (2020). "Learning Task" attributable to students' stress during the pandemic Covid-19. Jurnal Ilmu Keperawatan Jiwa, 3(2), 203-208. http://dx.doi.org/10.32584/jikj.v3i2.590

Luo, N., Zhang, M., & Qi, D. (2017). Effects of different interactions on students' sense of community in e-learning environment. Computers & Education, 115, 153-160. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2017.08.006

Mittelmeier, J., Rogaten, J., Long, D., Dalu, M., Gunter, A., Prinsloo, P., & Rienties, B. (2019). Understanding the early adjustment experiences of undergraduate distance education students in South Africa. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 20(3). https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v20i4.4101

Neely, M. E., Schallert, D. L., Mohammed, S. S., Roberts, R. M., Chen, Y. (2009). Self-kindness when facing stress: The role of self-compassion, goal regulation, and support in college students’ well-being. Motivation and Emotion, 33, 88-97. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-008-9119-8

Neff, K. D. (2003a). Self-compassion: An alternative conceptualization of a healthy attitude toward oneself. Self and Identity, 2, 85-102. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298860309032

Neff, K. D. (2003b). Development and validation of a scale to measure self-compassion. Self and Identity, 2, 223-250. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298860309027

Neff, K. D. (2011). Self‐compassion, self‐esteem, and well‐being. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 5(1), 1-12. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-9004.2010.00330.x

Neff, K. D. (2016). The self-compassion scale is a valid and theoretically coherent measure of self-compassion. Mindfulness, 7(1), 264-274. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-015-0479-3

Neff, K., & Germer, C. (2018). The mindful self-compassion workbook: A proven way to accept yourself, build inner strength, and thrive. Guilford Publications.

Neff, K. D., & Pommier, E. (2013). The relationship between self-compassion and other-focused concern among college undergraduates, community adults, and practicing meditators. Self and Identity, 12(2), 160-176. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298868.2011.649546

Orlando, J., & Attard, C. (2015). Digital natives come of age: The reality of today’s early career teachers using mobile devices to teach mathematics. Mathematics Education Research Journal, 28, 107-121. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13394-015-0159-6

Pather, S., & Dorasamy, N. (2018). The mismatch between first-year students’ expectations and experience alongside university access and success: A South African university case study. Journal of Student Affairs in Africa, 6(1), 49-64. https://doi.org/10.24085/jsaa.v6i1.3065

Schulenberg, J. E., & Zarrett, N. R. (2006). Mental health during emerging adulthood: continuity and discontinuity in courses, causes, and functions. In J. J. Arnett & J. L. Tanner (Eds.), Emerging adults in America: Coming of age in the 21st century (p. 135-172). American Psychological Association. https://doi.org/10.1037/11381-006

Simons, J. A., Kalichman, S. C., & Santrock, J. W. (1994). Human adjustment. WCB/McGraw-Hill.

Skala, K., Kapusta, N. D., Schlaff, G., Unseld, M., Erfurth, A., Lesch, O. M., Walter, H., Akiskal, K. K., & Akiskal, H. S. (2012). Suicidal ideation and temperament: An investigation among college students. Journal of Affective Disorders, 141(2-3), 399-405. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2012.03.010

Son, C., Hegde, S., Smith, A., Wang, X., & Sasangohar, F. (2020). Effects of Covid-19 on college students’ mental health in the United States: Interview survey study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 22(9). https://doi.org/10.2196/21279

Song, L., Singleton, E. S., Hill, J. R., & Koh, M. H. (2004). Improving online learning: Student perceptions of useful and challenging characteristics. The Internet and Higher Education, 7(1), 59-70. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2003.11.003

Sugianto, D., Suwartono, C., & Sutanto, S. H. (2020). Reliabilitas dan Validitas Self-Compassion Scale Versi Bahasa Indonesia. Jurnal Psikologi Ulayat: Indonesian Journal of Indigenous Psychology. https://doi.org/10.24854/jpu02020-337

Taylor, S. B., Kennedy, L. A., Lee, C. E., & Waller, E. K. (2020). Common humanity in the classroom: Increasing self-compassion and coping self-efficacy through a mindfulness-based intervention. Journal of American College Health, 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1080/07448481.2020.1728278

Terry, M. L., Leary, M. R., & Mehta, S. (2013). Self-compassion as a buffer against homesickness, depression, and dissatisfaction in the transition to college. Self and Identity, 12(3), 278–290. https://doi.org/10.1080/15298868.2012.667913

The Australian. (2011, 21 September). Australian undergraduate attrition rates. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/higher-education/university-rankings/attritionrates/story-fna15id1-1226141560486

Tinto, V. (1996). Reconstructing the first year of college. Planning for Higher Education, 25(1), 1-6. https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ558395

Tinto, V. (1975). Dropout from higher education: A theoretical synthesis of recent research. Review of Educational Research, 45(1), 89-125. https://doi.org/10.3102/00346543045001089

UNESCO. (2020, 4 Maret). 290 million students out of school due to COVID-19: UNESCO releases first global numbers and mobilizes response. https://en.unesco.org/news/290-million-students-out-school-due-Covid-19-unesco-releases-first-global-numbers-and-mobilizes

Vijayalakshmi, N. & Sequeira, A. H. (2017). Campus adaptations of engineering undergraduates across academic years. International Journal of Environmental and Science Education, 12(5), 1241-1267. http://www.ijese.net/makale/1896.html

Vonderwell, S. (2003). An examination of asynchronous communication experiences and perspectives of students in an online course: A case study. Internet and Higher Education, 6, 77–90. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1096-7516(02)00164-1

Wang, X., Hegde, S., Son, C., Keller, B., Smith, A., & Sasangohar, F. (2020). Investigating mental health of US college students during the COVID-19 pandemic: Cross-sectional survey study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 22(9), e22817. https://doi.org/10.2196/22817

Watts, L. (2016). Synchronous and asynchronous communication in distance learning: A review of the literature. Quarterly Review of Distance Education, 17(1), 23. http://uindonesia.summon.serialssolutions.com

Woods, R. H. (2002). How much communication is enough in online courses? Exploring the relationship between frequency of instructor-initiated personal email and learners’ perceptions of and participation in online learning. International Journal of Instructional Media, 29(4), 377-394. https://search.proquest.com/openview/b571e879a60b21a529af59493ab4f087/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=30932

Zubir, D. M. (2012). Hubungan antara psychological well-being dan college adjustment pada mahasiswa tahun pertama Universitas Indonesia [Bachelor's thesis]. http://lib.ui.ac.id/detail?id=20357887&lokasi=lokal#parentHorizontalTab


  • There are currently no refbacks.