Personality and adjustment in South African higher education accounting studies

Published in: South African Journal of Accounting Research
Volume 32, issue 2-3, 2018 , pages: 189–204
DOI: 10.1080/10291954.2018.1442649
Author(s): Elmarie PapageorgiouSchool of Accountancy, South Africa, Chris William CallaghanSchool of Economic and Business Sciences, South Africa


This study seeks to investigate the contribution of individual personality differences to diverse aspects of accounting student adjustment to university in the context of a South African university. In a context in which many have but one opportunity to access higher education, knowledge of specific personality-related vulnerabilities to adjustment is considered. Multiple linear regression analysis was applied to 939 questionnaire responses of first-year accountancy students. Findings indicate that conscientiousness may offer an adjustment advantage across almost all adjustment dimensions, and neuroticism might represent a specific vulnerability. Findings may have implications for university contexts globally which share similarities with the South African university context of increasing diversity.

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