Browsing by Subject "positive psychology"

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  • Lepola, Heini (Helsingfors universitet, 2017)
    In this study we investigate the concepts of courage according to Finnish students of different ages, how the conceptualization of courage develops in different age-groups, how the thin boundary between courage and foolhardiness appears in the students' interpretations, and how one can learn courage. The emphasis is on students' own life-world phenomena experiences and interpretations. Our unique data consists of applied storycrafting interviews with 6 to 7-year-old preschoolers and school essays written by students in age groups of 11 to 12, 15 to 16 and 16 to 18-years. The data has been collected in southern Finland. The study is a qualitative study with a narrative approach and phenomenography. Applying both data-driven and theory-driven content analysis, we have classified our findings from different age-groups into four main categories: (a) the role of fear in courage, (b) the concepts of courage as physical, psychological, social and moral courage, (c) the development of conceptualization of courage through age and (d) the thin boundary between courage and foolhardiness. The emphasis is on describing and interpreting students' concepts and conceptualization of courage and relate our findings on the umbrella conceptualization of courage by Rate et al. (2007). We also view students' interpretations on how courage feels like and what emotions are related to it, wether they think that courage can be cultivated and what it is that students think enables one to learn courage. Social context and relationships of students in different ages emerge as important factors on their reflection of courage.
  • Erikivi, Anne (Helsingfors universitet, 2017)
    The aim of my research was to find out the experiences of the teachers involved in an intervention carried out in Espoo schools during the years 2015-2016 based on their descriptions. The research is part of the University of Helsinki's project aimed to find out whether the character strength teaching is appropriate for basic education. Character strengths are a current topic, and paying attention to strengths in teaching has already been mentioned in the new curriculum. Research on character strengths is part of the research of positive psychology and pedagogy. The strengths are originally based on ancient sources, among others the are tology of Aristotle. Researchers C. Peterson and M. Seligman have developed their own VIA philosophy, virtue and strength rating. This classification is also underlying in the character strength teaching. The material of my research was transcribed interviews. Seven teachers from three different schools were interviewed. The intervention included about six months' worth of material for teaching character strengths. As a research method I used discourse analysis. Teachers' speech emphasized the desire to know their students better, pausing and listening to a student. Their speech was very student centered. The teachers had adopted the message of positive pedagogy and character strength teaching. I found several discourses that I named as follows: the discourse of praise, the need for additional education, well-being, good interaction, the need to meet, and the discourses of doubt and challenges. According to my research the teachers felt that the intervention was a success and character strengths are an important area of basic education. As a conclusion I can say that teachers have the need for further training in order to have character strengths permanently as a part of their work. They need new ways of operating and thinking in order to survive in their profession.