Often students may choose to please people in their immediate environment rather than completing assignments. Possible consequences include lower grades, increased stress and overall dissatisfaction with one's own academic achievement.
The question arises as to how these interpersonal relationships can compromise a student's scholastic priorities. This paper will detail the effect these pressures have on academic performance and highlight some of the ways students have found to overcome these hurdles.
The data supporting these claims was drawn from a set of twenty interviews conducted to ascertain a student's ability to cope to university life. The focus of these conversations was on how students combine academic and non-academic priorities to gain a balance between scholastic demands and non-academic requests for his time. The interview was conducted in a question and answer format with the questions. The questions from each interview contained strong similarities although not exactly alike.
The subjects of the interviews were undergraduate students either majoring in or having a strong interest in Sociology or Child and Youth Studies. Many students have an additional minor relative to their proposed career upon graduating but the primary emphasis of students queried fell in one of these two fields.
All conclusions reached in this study were arrived at by analyzing each case point by point in an exhaustive examination of files. The files contained quotes from both interviewer and students recorded exactly as spoken. Files scrutinized include students who have adapted well to external social pressures as well as those who haven't.
This paper does not assume that the daily life of a student should be all work and no play. Rather, the author believes a student's university experience should also be enjoyable. Satisfaction in a student experience is directly correlated with their ability to balance studying with socializing. For example, as one student said, she wants "to find time to spend time with friends and my boyfriend but school is more important to me than these other responsibilities (Trina, 75).
The most obvious diversions students face come from friends. Though well-meaning, friends may exert pressure on the student to neglect assignments. Different course schedules cause a student's deadlines to vary from that of his friends. This naturally results in conflicts between the student's free time and that of his peers.
"I mean, everyone's been in that situation where all their friends are leaving to go to the bar and you feel like you're chained to your desk writing an essay" (Elizabeth, 101).
Often the student is unable to resist the urge to please their friends. The dilemma faced is described as "going out, that's a big thing so far, and like, I find that I cave in a lot, too, to people" (Marta, 234). Rejecting social invitations too many times can cause a student to be perceived as a loner or asocial. Eventually the student may not be invited anymore.
University students for the most part are not that removed from high school. The herd mentality of that age creates a desire to belong that makes them susceptible to placing studies on the back burner. They may not have developed the ability to say no.