I think I can, I know I can? Success orientation in adult learner academic self-directedness

Keywords: adult learner, self-directedness, success orientation, ODeL, South Africa


A Learning 2.0 milieu requires an active learner mindset, where the learner initiates and directs the learning experience. Consequently, adult learner academic self-directedness is essential for facilitating successful lifelong learning. Learner self-directedness is of specific importance in South African higher education, since only about 12 per cent of qualifying matriculants will continue to higher education, and of those, only about 6 per cent will qualify within 6 years. Adult learner self-directedness broadly consists of contextual (learning environment), cognitive (agency) and behavioural (self-management) elements. Although researchers agree that a fairly well-developed capacity for self-directedness is a requirement for successful ODeL studies, there is a lack of research on adult learner self-directedness in the South African ODeL context. The adult learner self-directedness scale (ALSDS) was developed to investigate adult learners in an ODeL context. The scale produced four factors describing adult learner self-directedness in, of which success orientation seems to be the most noteworthy.

Author Biography

J. Botha, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa

Department of Human Resource Management, Lecturer.


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How to Cite
Botha, J. 2021. “I Think I Can, I Know I Can? Success Orientation in Adult Learner Academic Self-Directedness”. South African Journal of Higher Education 35 (2), 42-55. https://doi.org/10.20853/35-2-3996.
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