Physical- Psychological Punishment, Emotional Regulation and Academic Self-Efficacy in High School Students

Thesis Title: Physical- Psychological Punishment, Emotional Regulation and Academic Self-Efficacy in High School Students

Author: Muhammad Safi Aslam

Supervisor: Farah Malik

Year: 2017

Degree: MPhil

University: Institute of Applied Psychology, Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan

Corresponding Address: Department of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan. Email:, Phone: 92-42-9231245


The research investigated the role of punishment by teachers in relationship to cognitive emotional regulation and academic self-efficacy in high school male students. It was hypothesized that there would be negative association between punishment and academic self-efficacy and positive relationship with test anxiety. The mediating role of cognitive emotion regulation between physical and psychological punishment and academic self-efficacy was also assessed. The current research consisted of 3 studies. In study 1, an indigenous tool was developed and validated based on corporal punishment scale (Malik 2015). Study 2 was carried out with a sample of 444 students of 9th and 10th grades with mean age of 14.82(1.27) drawn from 2 cities of Punjab; Rajanpur and Chunian. The measures included Punishment by Teachers Scale, Cognitive Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (Granefski, Kraaij & Spinhoven, 2001), Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (Pintrich & DeGroot, 1990) and School Bonding (Henry et al., 2009). Pearson product correlation showed a significant negative correlation between punishment by teachers, academic self-efficacy (intrinsic value, cognitive strategy use, self regulation), and school bonding. SEM was carried out though AMOS that depicted that cognitive emotional regulation was a significant mediator between physical, psychological punishment, and academic self-efficacy. t-test showed differences in punishment in terms of grades/class of students. In Study 3, in-depth interviews with 8 participants (2 teachers, 2 parents, 2 education administrators and 2 students). Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis depicted 3 superordinate categories namely causes, myths each and traditional beliefs behind physical punishment by teachers. Teacher related major causes included lack of understanding of individual differences, pressure to produce good results, lack of training, low self-worth, and large number of students in class. Family related causes were parental illiteracy, neglect and violence. Social causes included justification through religion, rural culture and ineffective system of education. Myths identified were related to acceptance of using stick by teachers, to child training, and myths about teachers. The research contributed through an indigenous scale which could be utilized in educational and clinical settings. The results were discussed in the specific sociocultural context of Pakistan. Findings might be useful in understanding the dynamics of punishment in schools

Keywords: Physical punishment, psychological punishment, academic self-efficacy, myths.


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