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Developing a multi-dimensional well-being framework for higher education: evidence from South Africa

Developing a multi-dimensional well-being framework for higher education: evidence from South Africa
Developing a multi-dimensional well-being framework for higher education: evidence from South Africa
Apartheid in South Africa ended over 20 years ago, yet poverty and access to and participation in higher education remain challenges for most South Africans. The 2012 General Household Survey shows less than 4.3% of individuals aged 18 – 29 were enrolled in higher educational institutions, indicating limited access to higher education for most and suggesting few South Africans have opportunities to improve their well-being. Multidimensional poverty, which defines poverty beyond income or consumption by including several non-monetary dimensions of poverty, is adopted in this study and is based on Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach. Using a list of four dimensions, each with various indicators, this study measured the overall well-being of respondents by using a multidimensional deprivation scale. This study adopted a mixed method sequential explanatory approach. First, an online survey was administered. Data were collected from 427 participants. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the quantitative data. Second, semi-structured interviews were undertaken with 30 participants. The qualitative data were analysed using a thematic analysis approach to deepen understanding. In both phases, the participants had graduated from one of the seven universities located in the three poorest provinces of South Africa. The findings show that higher educational attainment impacts employment opportunities and health awareness, but has a low impact on living standards and social justice. Findings show that only 16% of the participants are multidimensionally deprived in at least 36% of the weighted indicators, while none of them are vulnerable to poverty or in severe poverty. Respondents are generally satisfied with their living standards; their socio-economic status increased, and their education enabled them to acquire new capabilities and opportunities. Higher educational attainment impacted respondents’ wellbeing positively in most dimensions and marginally in the dimension of social justice. The study adds to the body of knowledge on multidimensional poverty and the impact HEA has on it, specifically in relation to South Africa.
University of Southampton
Miller, Faslie
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Miller, Faslie
752df91d-9021-4d41-9af0-880de5ec710f
Bhopal, Kalwant
5ac0970e-1c42-4757-87df-6fdb6f826314
Azaola, Marta
9ac43b18-a969-4877-a1b8-62bb4541da82

Miller, Faslie (2018) Developing a multi-dimensional well-being framework for higher education: evidence from South Africa. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 323pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Apartheid in South Africa ended over 20 years ago, yet poverty and access to and participation in higher education remain challenges for most South Africans. The 2012 General Household Survey shows less than 4.3% of individuals aged 18 – 29 were enrolled in higher educational institutions, indicating limited access to higher education for most and suggesting few South Africans have opportunities to improve their well-being. Multidimensional poverty, which defines poverty beyond income or consumption by including several non-monetary dimensions of poverty, is adopted in this study and is based on Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach. Using a list of four dimensions, each with various indicators, this study measured the overall well-being of respondents by using a multidimensional deprivation scale. This study adopted a mixed method sequential explanatory approach. First, an online survey was administered. Data were collected from 427 participants. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the quantitative data. Second, semi-structured interviews were undertaken with 30 participants. The qualitative data were analysed using a thematic analysis approach to deepen understanding. In both phases, the participants had graduated from one of the seven universities located in the three poorest provinces of South Africa. The findings show that higher educational attainment impacts employment opportunities and health awareness, but has a low impact on living standards and social justice. Findings show that only 16% of the participants are multidimensionally deprived in at least 36% of the weighted indicators, while none of them are vulnerable to poverty or in severe poverty. Respondents are generally satisfied with their living standards; their socio-economic status increased, and their education enabled them to acquire new capabilities and opportunities. Higher educational attainment impacted respondents’ wellbeing positively in most dimensions and marginally in the dimension of social justice. The study adds to the body of knowledge on multidimensional poverty and the impact HEA has on it, specifically in relation to South Africa.

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Published date: March 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 424727
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/424727
PURE UUID: ac371964-6b78-4d8f-9aca-ce31815c8ae7
ORCID for Marta Azaola: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6671-4095

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 05 Oct 2018 11:41
Last modified: 01 Aug 2019 00:33

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Contributors

Author: Faslie Miller
Thesis advisor: Kalwant Bhopal
Thesis advisor: Marta Azaola ORCID iD

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