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Developing a Culturally Appropriate Tool to Assess Young People’s Wellbeing in Kazakhstan: A Derived Etic Approach

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Part of the Transdisciplinary Perspectives in Educational Research book series (TPER,volume 4)

Abstract

This chapter focuses on the process of developing a concise but conceptually-grounded young people’s wellbeing measure for use in educational practice with secondary-aged students in Kazakhstan. Assessment of young people’s wellbeing is a relatively new field and research has primarily been conducted in western, educated, industrialised, rich, and democratic contexts. The available literature suggests that tools developed in such contexts cannot be applied unproblematically in other contexts, as whilst there may be some commonalities across all contexts, there are nuanced differences in how wellbeing is conceptualised related to cultural setting. This necessitates an adjustment of commonly used assessment tools to ensure they are culturally appropriate. We suggest that a derived etic approach can be deployed to successfully modify wellbeing measurement tools to make them fit for context and illustrate how this can be achieved through outlining the process we undertook in our work in Kazakhstan. Such an approach is challenging, thus some of the lessons we have learned are shared to empower researchers wishing to take this approach.

Keywords

  • Assessment
  • Wellbeing instrument
  • Wellbeing model
  • Derived-etic approach
  • Cultural setting
  • Iterative-longitudinal mixed-method approach

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Fig. 9.1

Notes

  1. 1.

    This was one of the objectives of a British Council Newton Fund and Al Farabi Foundation funded Institutional Links research project that began work in 2015.

  2. 2.

    See https://www.unicef.org/kazakhstan/en/press-releases/child-well-being-index-project-launched-kazakhstan

  3. 3.

    ONS see https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/wellbeing

  4. 4.

    See https://www.unicef.org/statistics/index_24302.html

  5. 5.

    See https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/wellbeing/datasets/childrenswellbeingmeasures for the 31 indicators.

  6. 6.

    These being (1) percentage of 10–15 year-old children relatively happy with the school they go to, and (2) percentage of 10–15 year-old children expressing the wish to go on to further full-time education.

  7. 7.

    See https://isciweb.org/

  8. 8.

    There is an optional section on the version for 12-year-olds that includes 8 items purporting to measure eudaimonic wellbeing, but the source is not referenced see https://isciweb.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/ISCWeB_Parts-of-the-questionnaire1.pdf

  9. 9.

    There is an additional single item of overall life satisfaction, but single item measures are best avoided given problems with measurement error are accentuated with single item scales.

  10. 10.

    A much more recent article has provided some validation data (Casas et al., 2020) but this wasn’t available to us at the time.

  11. 11.

    This is a pastoral role which involves looking after the physical and emotional welfare of students.

  12. 12.

    See https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Quality_of_life_indicators

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Acknowledgements

This research was funded by the “Newton-Al Farabi Partnership Programme ” (Reference number 172734464). The Newton-Al Farabi Partnership Programme is coordinated by JSC Science Fund, for Kazakhstan, and the British Council, for the United Kingdom. We would like to acknowledge the full research team for their contribution to this paper: Daniel Hernandez-Torrano, Anna Sioni CohenMiller, Kairat Kurakbayev, Eva Brown Hajdukova, Ainur Almukhambetova, Madina Tynybayeva, and Assel Batyrova. We would also like to thank the important work undertaken by researchers from Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Education.

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Correspondence to Ros McLellan .

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McLellan, R., Faucher, C., Winter, L. (2022). Developing a Culturally Appropriate Tool to Assess Young People’s Wellbeing in Kazakhstan: A Derived Etic Approach. In: McLellan, R., Faucher, C., Simovska, V. (eds) Wellbeing and Schooling. Transdisciplinary Perspectives in Educational Research, vol 4. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-95205-1_9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-95205-1_9

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