Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Ralph G. Brockett


The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between self-directed learning readiness and resilience among graduate students. A convenience sample of 148 graduate students was selected from three departments in the College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Participants were administered the Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale (SDLRS) developed by Guglielmino (1977), the Resilience Scale (RS) developed by Wagnild and Young (1987), and a demographic questionnaire to describe the sample. A significant positive correlation was found between SDLRS and RS mean scores (r = .61; p < .001). Other findings inc1ude positive correlation's with self-directed learning readiness and the resilience factors: personal competence and acceptance of self and life. Another positive correlation was found between self-directed learning readiness and age, that is, as age increases, SDLRS scores tend to increase. Significant regressions were found using the total RS scores and age. Tota] RS scores and age tend to explain 39.2% of the variability in the SDLRS. However, the personal competence factor of the RS explained 43.4% of the variability in the SDLRS. Recommendations for future research inc1ude replicating this study with diverse populations of graduate students in terms of racial identity. Research is also needed in self-directed learning readiness and resilience with other adult populations from community groups. Research is needed with different instruments that measure selfdirected learning readiness and resilience because most research on resilience has focused on children and there is a need to develop more research on resilience among adults. Finally, qualitative research is needed to provide a different perspective from the population through interviews.

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