Original Research

Preliminary development of the Higher Education Hindrance Demands Scale amongst academics in the South African context

Nelesh Dhanpat, Roslyn de Braine, Madelyn Geldenhuys
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 45 | a1595 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v45i0.1595 | © 2019 Nelesh Dhanpat, Roslyn de Braine, Madelyn Geldenhuys | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 October 2018 | Published: 18 June 2019

About the author(s)

Nelesh Dhanpat, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Roslyn de Braine, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Madelyn Geldenhuys, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa


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Abstract

Orientation: Over the past two decades, since the advent of democracy in South Africa, the country has undergone transformation in virtually all sectors of society. Education is no exception, with higher education institutions (HEIs) also experiencing change. The transformation of HEIs has brought about many new challenges, demands and stresses that may hinder the work performance of academics.

Research purpose: This study seeks to determine the ‘hindrance demands’ unique to the South African context by developing and validating the Higher Education Hindrance Demands Scale (HEHDS). This scale includes a set of demands placed on academics’ experiences in this context.

Research approach, design and method: Data were collected from 184 academic staff members from HEIs based on a quantitative research design using a cross-sectional survey. Data were analysed through exploratory factor analysis (EFA), while the reliability of the scale was obtained through Cronbach’s coefficient alpha.

Main findings: The results produced, as anticipated, a six-factor model consisting of: (1) workload, (2) higher education unrest, (3) change management, (4) decolonisation, (5) online teaching and learning and (6) psychological safety. The findings indicated excellent reliability, ranging between 0.74 and 0.90.

Practical and managerial implications: Taking into consideration the context in which HEIs operate in South Africa, it is noteworthy that the recommendations in this article will assist in identifying the hindrance demands placed on academic staff. Researchers in the field are therefore called to validate the instrument developed through the use of confirmatory factor analysis.

Contributions or value-add: This study adds to the limited research on hindrance demands placed on staff in HEIs.


Keywords

Hindrance demands; higher education institutions; academic work; job demands; exploratory factor analysis; test construction.

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