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MARITAL QUALITY AMONG MALAYSIAN STUDENTS

INTRODUCTION

1.1

Introduction

Nowadays, marital quality becomes an important aspect of human life. Persons experiencing
marital problems tend to report higher level of stress symptom compared to those who are
having good quality in a marital relationship. The marital quality helps the spouse to achieve
life satisfaction and global happiness (Proulx et al., 2007). A longitudinal research already
revealed that the negative marital relationship predicts increase in stress phase over the time
(Randall & Bodenmann, 2009).

The numerous and profound impact of stress on marital quality had been documented
by previous researchers (Proulx et al., 2007; Lichter & Carmalt, 2009; Randall &
Bodenmann, 2009). Nowadays, to pursuit of university level, especially at postgraduate is
one of commonly transition which brings high levels of stress. Academic stressors, including
many syllabi to be learned, overwhelming workload, test or exam anxiety, struggles with time
management, and individual high expectation already been reported to contribute higher
stress levels which had been experienced by postgraduate students (Oswalt & Riddock,
2007). Other stresses include financial problems, high demand of dissertation work,
challenging coursework, and handling internship. According to Vaez & Laflamme (2008)
person who attend postgraduate programs reported to have increased stress due to the role
strain between academic and familial. The postgraduate program presents both chronic,
persistent stressors (e.g., work life balance, various workloads) and acute, time-limited
stressors (e.g., specific milestone such as proposal defends and comprehensive exams). Thus,
it clearly showed that the postgraduate program is the struggle transition which most of the
students experiences as a period of elevated stress.

Postgraduate stressors brings many consequences. The stress which comes from
postgraduate program has been associated to decrease students' psychological well-being and

physical health. According to Paro et al., (2010) higher levels of stress has have been linked
with physical consequences such as depression, anxiety, and lower mental-health related
quality of life. Therefore, it is not weird when the postgraduate students tend to consider
dropping out of university due to academic overwhelming demands.
Based on this concern, in the past two decades, there has been a marked increase of
empirical and theoretical attentions to stress and adaptive process (Neff, & Karney, 2009;
Langer et. al., 2008; Randall & Bodenmann, 2009. Usually, individual stress has been
reported to affect the marital quality. Furthermore, higher levels of stress are associated with
higher risk of divorce (Bodenmann et al., 2007). Previous outcomes are meaningful due to it
explain explanation that the stress appears to cause as an indirect effect on individual health
through its impact on marital quality. Besides, the stress also can cause contribute as a direct
effect on the physical and emotional of individuals.
Therefore, researchers are faced with critical tasks in order to determine the factors
which impact the adaptive process used between postgraduate students with their spouses and
identifying effective strategies for handling the transition of stressful events.
Current research on the perspective of marital quality emphasizes the importance of
recognizing marital relationships in broader context. The research will integrate many
contextual factors which are likely to influence marital quality based on individual stressful
events, couple adaptive process, and couple enduring vulnerabilities.
Pengenalan Nampak agak longgar. Setiap isi penting hanya di sentuh pada permukaan
sahaja. Perlukan ulasan / sokongan. Ada yang ok kerana disertakan bukti / kajian lalu..tetapi
kebanyakannya Nampak agak biasa dan tidak Nampak kesarjanaan dalam penulisan.
1.2

Background of the Study Problem

As the the married postgraduate students face various several of stress, their relationship
with the spouse are impacted. They requireds an adaptive process for their families when a
major transition experienced by any person in their family. An example, Fuenfhausen &
Cashwell, (2013) indicated that the program related stress, which come from the postgraduate
program had a significant impact on the whole family system.

One of the subsystems which potentially to be affected is the marital dyad. The stress
face of the among postgraduate students has been shown to have a negative impact on
marital quality between the students and their spouses (Ghorogh et al., 2015). It reveals that
the postgraduate students have potentially exposed by the marital dissatisfaction sources.
According to Fuenfhausen & Cashwell (2013) the dissatisfaction sources may come from
lack of energy and time spend together for the family, differing or changing levels of
individual philosophies and development of life, affective communication, role strain, sexual
relation, and difficulties in problem solving. All of these may lead towards the high potential
for divorce, especially at the transition points such as a dissertation, internship, exam, and
graduation. Therefore, these findings showed evidence that participation in postgraduate
program has already introduced various numbers of stressors which then have potential to
affect postgraduate students negatively.
According to Fuenfhausen & Cashwell (2013), the stress faces of the

among

postgraduate students is coming comes from the specific situation, event, or transition during
the university challenges. Uncontrolled stress can give directly or indirectly threatens to the
family. Thus, it is important for each partner to have a good adaptive process. A good
adaptive process should consider each others satisfaction in the marital relationship. Adaptive
process is is the one of the important aspects need to be considered because as it is very
useful to be a buffersa buffer from the negative effects [references]. It also can shape the
relational appraisals of the marriage such as intimate, trusting, and supportive partnership. In
the current research, as the university life has been the stressors for postgraduate students,
they need to have some form of coping response due to its potential to be a predictor towards
marital quality.
Due to current challenges in marriage today, the current research is trying to provide
knowledge on the various factors which can brings impact on the marital quality. The current
study builds based on the integrated previous theoretical work. The research will reveal what
is are the causes that will give a negative impact on the marital quality. By From the
integrated previous theoretical work, it will give a picture on how factors such as spouse
enduring vulnerabilities, stressful events, and adaptive process are related to each other. The
Vulnerabilities Stress Adaptation (VSA) model is offered to be used so that the research can
have the integrative model which can contribute many factors. A wide range of factors is
important to show a wide view in order to understand the marital quality.

Theoretical model that had been developed by Karney and Bradbury (1995) is going
to will be used to explain the relationship among various contextual variables. The
Vulnerabilities Stress Adaptation (VSA) model will be assumed to provide support in the
recent study. The theoretical and empirical will be used to test the unified model in order to
associate among various of context. The present research is going to evaluate the ways of
various factors which can bring impact on spouse marital quality.
Mustaqim, you have to learn how to write background of problem.
Taka da langsung isu di sini. Yang ada hanya masalah stress yang memang diketahui
umum. Tiada sokongan / bukti masalah sehingga menyebabkan awak perlu buat kajian ini.\
Apa masalah adoptive process? Apa masalah Vulnerabilities?
Apa bukti marital quality pelajar post graduate di Malaysia ada masalah?
Bagaimana stressful event pelajar PG yang dah kawin di Malaysia?
Dalam isu kena sentuh semua variable yang ada dalam persoalan kajian sehingga
awak rasa perlumya buat kajian
Cari GAP kajia lalu yang menyebabkan kajian ini perlu dilakukan

1.3

Problem Statement

The influence of postgraduate students stress on marital relationship has been studied among
the samples of psychology (Wilks, 2008), medical (Shariati et. al., 2007), and family therapy
(Fuenfhausen & Cashwell 2013) by the outcomes showed the university life give the negative
impact on the marital relationship. However, no existing studies explained specifically the
marital relationship of postgraduate life among Malaysian. It is still unknown, whether the
personal growth, emotional nature of the work, and society culture bring positive or negative
impact on Malaysian students marital quality. Most of the research had been done among the
western society(Shariati et al., 2007; Howkins et al., 2008; Fuenfhausen & Cashwell, 2013),
but not yet research being conducted to the Malaysian culture society. It is believed that,
different culture has different expectation on the marital quality.
Furthermore, most of the researches on the marital quality just focus on the
international students (Hassan & Al Horany 2011; Askari et. al., 2012; Ghoroghi et al., 2015).
There is no study was focused on local postgraduate students. Thus, there a still lack of

information on any factors which can give impact on local postgraduate students. It is
believed, local and international students have different kind of challenges due to how many
commitments they hold. More commitments they have, more stressful events they need to
face. Usually, local postgraduate students have more commitments compared to the
international students. Local postgraduate students need to manage time and energy between
academic, career, and family. It is different with international students. Most international
students are not burdened with career commitment [Reference]?.
Lastly, adult attachment also has been known to be as a factor which influence marital
quality (Butzer & Campbell, 2008), but not among the postgraduate student population.
Regarding to the various demand of postgraduate life, the most common stressors reported is
lack of energy and time between the spouses and family (Fuenfhausen & Cashwell, 2013).
Managing roles, adapt new stressors, and adjusting expectations can lead couple to feel
isolated (Hassan & Al Horany, 2011), and lonely (Sawir et al., 2008). Therefore, enduring
vulnerabilities could provide the information to explain why postgraduate stress impacts
marital quality more than others.
This is not the way of writing Statement of Problem
1.4

Purpose of Study Objective of Study

Researcher notice there have several gaps related to the previous researches on marital
quality among postgraduate students. Previous researches not explored the marital
quality among Malaysian students. The outcomes are still unknown about how the
stressors of Malaysian students may relate to the spouse adjustment.
Previous studies also not explored the marital quality of local students. Most of the
study were conducted among the international students. Therefore the past researches was
not being able to give justification at the marital quality levels among the local students.
Previous researches also showed a gap in combining the various variables. Based on
the existing research, the existing studies just indicate the relationship between postgraduate
stressors and marital quality (Ghorogh et al., 2015), the relationship between adaptive process
and marital quality (Hassan & Al Horany, 2011), and the relationship between adult
attachment and marital quality (Gouin et al., 2009). Therefore, until now, previous
researchers still not considered broader aspects that in the marital relationship.

In the current research, researcher will examine various aspects which give the impact
on the marital quality among Malaysian postgraduates student. The aspects that will be
considered in research are stressful events, enduring vulnerabilities, adaptive process and
marital quality. It is important for the postgraduate to deal with their stressful events. If
difficulties occur in handling stressful circumstances, it may alter the spouses perception of
their satisfaction in marriage. Ultimately, repeated failure of adaptation will undermine the
marital quality, leading to increase levels of divorce thoughts (Hassan & Al Horany, 2011).
Well manage of stressful events can contribute to the spouses perceptions of the quality of
their marital relationship. While the adaptive process is a product of association between life
events they encounter and the spouses enduring vulnerabilities. Thus the marital quality can
be achieve when the spouse has a both good enduring vulnerabilities and adaptive process on
the life events. Otherwise, the spouses will face chronic and repeated life stressful events due
to lack ability to cope their negative marital interactions.
Therefore, in order to strengthen or maintain the marital quality, a research on the
successful adaptive process and good enduring vulnerabilities should be concerned so that it
can reduce the chances of marital dissolution. Researcher believed, the postgraduate student
life events can be either positive or negative impact depending on their strength capacities to
provide a good adaptive process and how good the enduring vulnerabilities they had been
developed.
i.

To determine the relationship of between enduring vulnerabilities on and adaptive

ii.

process among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the relationship of between enduring vulnerabilities on and marital

iii.

quality among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the effect of enduring vulnerabilities factor on adaptive process among

iv.

Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the effect of enduring vulnerabilities on marital quality among Malaysia

v.

postgraduate students.
To determine the relationship of between stressful events on and the adaptive process

vi.

among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the relationship of between stressful events on and marital quality

vii.

among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the effect of stressful events on the adaptive process factor among
Malaysian postgraduate students.

viii.

To determine the effect of stressful event on marital quality among Malaysian

ix.

postgraduate students.
To determine the a relationship of between adaptive process on and marital quality

x.

among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To determine the effect of adaptive process on marital quality among Malaysian

xi.

postgraduate students.
To identify adaptive process as a mediator for enduring vulnerabilities and marital

xii.

quality among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To identify adaptive process as a mediator for stressful events and marital quality
among Malaysian postgraduate students, adaptive process, and marital quality

xiii.

among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To identify dimensionality for enduring vulnerabilities, stressful events, adaptive

xiv.

process, and marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate students.


To validate Vulnerabilities Stress Adaptation (VSA) model in the Malaysian
postgraduate students context.

Mustaqim..
Apabila kita buat objektif kajian, ia harus ikut hiraraki dari segi aras analisis
-Kumpulkan semua obejktif berkenaan korelasi / hubungan dulu
Kemudian berkenaan factor yang contribute [regressi]
Diikuti mediator
Bina model
Saya tak pasti apa maksud awak dengan dimensionality
1.5

Research Questions

In current research, the relationships, effect, mediator, and dimentionality among stressful
events, enduring vulnerabilities, adaptive process, and marital quality were going to be study
among the Malaysian students sample.
i.

What is the Is there any significant relationship of between enduring

ii.

vulnerabilities on and adaptive process among Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the relationship of enduring vulnerabilities on marital quality among

iii.

Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the effect of enduring vulnerabilities factor on adaptive process among

iv.

Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the effect of enduring vulnerabilities on marital quality among Malaysia
postgraduate students ?

v.

What is the relationship of stressful events on the adaptive process among

vi.

Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the relationship of stressful events on marital quality among Malaysian

vii.

postgraduate students ?
What is the effect of stressful events on the adaptive process factor among

viii.

Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the effect of stressful event on marital quality among Malaysian

ix.

postgraduate students ?
What is the relationship of adaptive process on marital quality among Malaysian

x.

postgraduate students ?
What is the effect of adaptive process on marital quality among Malaysian

xi.

postgraduate students ?
Is that adaptive process can be as a mediator for enduring vulnerabilities and

xii.

marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate students ?


Is that adaptive process can be as a mediator for stressful events and marital
quality among Malaysian postgraduate students, adaptive process, and marital

xiii.

quality among Malaysian postgraduate students ?


What is the dimensionality for enduring vulnerabilities, stressful events, adaptive

xiv.

process, and marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate students ?


Is that Vulnerabilities Stress Adaptation (VSA) model is suitable in the Malaysian
postgraduate students context ?

1.6

Research Objective

To determine the relationship of enduring vulnerabilities on adaptive process among


Malaysian postgraduate students.
To determine the relationship of enduring vulnerabilities on marital quality among Malaysian
postgraduate students.
To determine the effect of enduring vulnerabilities factor on adaptive process among
Malaysian postgraduate students.
To determine the effect of enduring vulnerabilities on marital quality among Malaysia
postgraduate students.
To determine the relationship of stressful events on the adaptive process among Malaysian
postgraduate students.
To determine the relationship of stressful events on marital quality among Malaysian
postgraduate students.

To determine the effect of stressful events on the adaptive process factor among Malaysian
postgraduate students.
To determine the effect of stressful event on marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate
students.
To determine the relationship of adaptive process on marital quality among Malaysian
postgraduate students.
To determine the effect of adaptive process on marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate
students.
To identify adaptive process as a mediator for enduring vulnerabilities and marital quality
among Malaysian postgraduate students.
To identify adaptive process as a mediator for stressful events and marital quality among
Malaysian postgraduate students, adaptive process, and marital quality among Malaysian
postgraduate students.
To identify dimensionality for enduring vulnerabilities, stressful events, adaptive process, and
marital quality among Malaysian postgraduate students.
To validate Vulnerabilities Stress Adaptation (VSA) model in the Malaysian postgraduate
students context.