1.0 Literature Review
Increasing global pandemics and academic burdens have brought severe psychological health concerns among female college students. Unfortunately, scholars addressing this topic had conflicting opinions on causes and remedies to female students’ psychological issues. According to Leon (2005), social interactions and social contexts influence behavior patterns that have direct impact on the female student’s physical and psychological wellbeing. Social support contributes to sound self-efficacy which in turn leads to excellent physical activities (Leon, 2005). Similarly, Aleman (2010) argued that most female college students’ psychological problems occur due to weakening social bond between them during and after a college education. Unfortunately, friendship requires constant investment of energy or it will cease (Aleman, 2010). In concurrence, Cumming et al. (2006) posited that romantic relationships and friendships are voluntary and can strengthen, or decline due to concrete decisions. As such, female students can establish and sustain relationships through constant social support or communication (Cumming et al., 2006). College female students sustain friendships in which each member feels valued, loved, trusted and finds the meaning and purpose of life (Leon, 2005). All these articles agreed that the original factor that unites female students many weaken due to declined communication with former friends or establishment of new relationships in other places. In such context, members must seek the appropriate mechanism to supplement their bond.
Resources used in this proposal suggested different approaches of strengthening female students’ relationships. Firstly, Aleman (2010) considered self-authorship model vital in influencing female students’ identity development and self-image in relationships. As young adults, female college students experience neurological development, which influences reasoning, consciousness and awareness (Aleman, 2010). Students who understand and articulate new circumstances such as adulthood, employment and marriage could adequately explore subjectivity and identity attributes. Consequently, self-authorship could contribute to a stable and permanent cognitive capital, and allows female students to interpret and combine complex knowledge with their sense of self.
Moreover, sororal relationships contribute immensely to female students’ cognitive development and self-image by mitigating academic-related fears and stress and substantiate ideas and thoughts. These relationships can develop one’s positive ethnic or race-driven self-perceptions and help them assess ideas and other important life topics without risks. Likewise, these relationships provide a platform where college students from any part of the world can share different worldviews and excel academically without feeling disadvantaged (Aleman, 2010). Besides, female friendships could influence the proper development of college students’ cognitive components which usually create self-image. These students could develop cognitive values based on how they relate to their female peers. Most female youths could use these relationships to get new information and struggle to know themselves or others while practicing advanced thinking during decision-making. More so, these bonds could motivate them to articulate risk-free actions, playfulness and free-flowing achievements during learning (Leon, 2005). Apart from allowing these young adults to practice an inductive and honest discussion that embodies interpersonal reasoning, these relationships can also allow them develop proper reasoning and perception.
Contrastingly, Cummings et al. (2006) claimed that telecommunication technologies such as e-mail, and phones could help female students to strengthen their relationships despite many barriers. The article argued that phones and e-mails could allow female students from every part of the globe to interact, bond and establish long-lasting relationships that could positively impact their general wellbeing (Cummings et al., 2006). Besides reaching out to their loved ones through phone calls, text messages, female students could also interact with their remote friends via e-mail messages. However, this article clarified that sustaining social friendship with technology-based approaches cannot strengthen members’ bonds at the same level. More so, these technologies could not influence basic communication variables uniformly due to frequency and quality of communication (Cummings et al., 2006). More so, technological communication’s financial constrains undermines the effort to restore the ailing relationship between college students. For instance, students may not afford text or internet bundles to communicate through emails or phones. Finally, the author asserted that technology-driven communication had limited impact on retaining relationships because it eliminates fundamental elements that influences a strong bond. Although Cumming’s article applauded telecommunication technologies, it acknowledged that this model has many limitations than peer-to-peer communication.
2.1 Research Questions and Hypothesis
This research will respond to the below questions:
- What is the importance of sororal relationships among female college students?
- What are the best strategies for creating successful sororal relationships with female college students?
Based on the above research questions, this paper predicts that:
Sororal relationships contribute to the proper development of female college students’ psychological and cognitive well-being. More so, this paper suggested that expanding online social circles, friendliness, being transparent and vulnerable, and providing emotional support can create successful sororal relationships among female college students.
2.2 Research Design
This research will rely on a descriptive study design to investigate the missing link between sororal relationships and cognitive development among female college students. Besides explaining the benefits of these relationships, researchers will rely on this design to find the suitable strategies of creating successful sororal relationships among female college students.
2.3 Population and Sample
Researchers will use two groups of sophomore senior and junior females for this investigation. These participants from four New York colleges will be between 18-24 years and 25-30 years. The first group will consist of thirty-five white female students and their five non-white counterparts from Queens College and LaGuardia Community College. The other group will comprise 41 white and seven non-white female students from SJU College and Vaughn College. Researchers will use stratified random sampling to admit 50 female parents into each group based on their age category. Both groups will be the sources of qualitative data.
2.4 Ethical considerations
The research team will obtain permission from the four colleges and willing participants’ parents and guardians to participate in the study. More so, this team will provide informed consent to parents willing to participate in the study. After that, the research team will assure all the participants of their anonymity during the study before getting a good orientation on how to get their data.
2.5 Research Methods
This study will use a qualitative longitudinal method to articulate the existing relationship between female students’ cognitive values and experiences and sororal relationships. This approach will help examine how the two influence each other with time. More so, this terminology will provide a short-time explanation of the relationship facilitating an overtime change among these students.
2.6 Data Collection
Researchers will also use a wide range of data collection methods to obtain as much information as possible. These will include structured interviews and online surveys because of their efficiency in collecting this information. While the first part of the online surveys will have open-ended questions requiring a “Yes” or “No,” the second part will help assess the relationship between cognition and sororal relationships.
3.0 Expected Findings
On the completion of this investigation, researchers will find that sororal friendships play a critical role in developing female students’ overall cognitive and psychological essentials. It will prove that 80% of the new college students from black or Latino communities are prone to immense ethnic and race-related discrimination and stereotypes than their white counterparts. Researchers will link this situation to poor self-image and self-perception among female students from the people of color. As a result, they will propose various strategies to help create successful sororal relationships among female college students.
Firstly, this research will encourage regular meetings among female college students to help create successful sororal relationships. Researchers will suggest that female students search their target friends from their existing social contexts. For instance, a twenty-year-old female college student will need to find her peers in her level of education, social and academic groups and other relevant social circles. However, thirty-year-old student is expected to find their preferred female friends from internship groups or other relevant networks. Secondly, researchers will find an expansion of online social networking essential in attracting female friends. That will likely happen when one optimizes online presence or engages in remote meetups and activities. Likewise, the study will recommend friendliness behaviors to appeal to female students because of their emotional support and validation. In researchers’ view, some friendliness signs and gestures such as warm smiles when meeting female students, showing interest in their arguments and inquiring about them could actualize this goal.
The paper will discourage female students from posing a threat to those they want to befriend because it is likely to cause jealousy. In their view, this pattern will deters or breaks the newly formed friendships and relationships among female students at college. More so, few insecure female students would conceal their feeling while others will consider it as a threat and end the existing relationships before they mature. In this context, female college students seeking successful relationships will need to cease comparing themselves to others. Instead, they will need to focus less on their appearance and acknowledge the existing similarities instead of differences.
This study will note that most female college students cannot approach their female peers and tell them they would want to be good friends due to fear of stereotypes. Despite that, researchers will suggest that making the first move can spark sororal relationships among female students. Some best ways of requesting female students for friendships will include a casual suggestion to have lunch or a cup of coffee or informing them of your plans and inviting them to join (Leon, 2005). Inquiring about their weekend plans and schedules will critical in achieving these outcomes. Next, being transparent and vulnerable was likely to attract female students to create strong relationships. Although it is good to avoid revealing to others the deepest secrets, researchers will argue that female students share their feelings and talks openly with their peers to initiate trust and closeness. More so, these students others when things are not well and assessing friends’ disclosure could orchestrate robust sororal relationships.
Researchers will consider emotional support an effective stimulant of strong and sustainable relationships, especially for female college students. They will concur with Shafir (2019) that adolescent females often have most emotional needs in their relationships with others than males. Consequently, there will be an assumption that providing emotional support will create robust and sustainable relationships among young female adults. Thus, students aiming to create relationships will need to encourage, comfort, assist and listen to their peers’ needs and react appropriately to attract their trustworthiness and loyalty, and strengthen the existing relationship. Besides, creating a sustainable relationship, after creating it, will require regular communication through calling, texting. This notion will reflect the empirical research findings which showed that women bond well through conversations while men rely on activities to strengthen relationships. Therefore, having weekly conversations via call or text may stimulate a strong bond between female friends.
This paper will validate that acknowledging and showing interest in friends’ loved ones can establish successful sororal relationships among female college students. Researchers will agree with Leon (2005) that women like mentioning their loved ones in their conversations with friends. These may include partners, classmates, friends, children and siblings. More so, this study supported Shafir’s argument that remembering the names of our friends’ siblings, children, classmates, and relatives could create the notion that the existing bond goes beyond friendship. Other activities such as remembering friends’ family events, asking how they are fairing, and attempting to know the people they value most will also attract the same outcomes. Likewise, the essay will argue that inviting friends to meet our beloved ones could also strengthen this bond. Active listening will also prevail as the best approach to strengthening the existing relationship between female college students. As Shafir (2019) argued, quality listening skills can help one to digest an ongoing discussion and offer an appropriate response or advice. That may explain why the author discourages prompt pieces of advice and conclusions. In this setting, learning to contribute to the discussion after female friends have asked for an opinion or taking the blame for the wrongdoing seem essential in establishing stronger ties among female students.
This research will reveal that creating a strong bond with female college students requires showing the real self despite the potential rejection. In this strategy, one will need to overcome the pretence to be perfect or the urge to conceal weaknesses. Instead, proving to be authentic by revealing the true self before female peers will help build stronger relationships among female students. Besides, this paper found that emphasizing, articulating and showing affection and care towards female friends can help establish strong relationships among female students. Appreciating others for their friendship and assisting and acknowledging their value in the relationship will potentially influence similar results.
Finally, this study will find that college students reduces how they interact with their previous social groups after transitioning to the workforce under some circumstances. Besides this transition undermining the previous relationships, it was expected to threaten the bond that costs a lot to form. In concurrence Cummings et al. (2006), this paper found that distant communication courtesy of telecommunication technologies would allow former college friends to interact and strengthen their bonds. Researchers will expect constant communication through calls, texts or video conferencing among these friends to stimulate the existing relationship and deterring dormancy. This pattern will likely make former college students feel close to each other thereby attracting successful relationships among female college students during and after college.
Aleman, A., M. (2010). College Women’s Female Friendships: A Longitudinal View. Journal of Higher Education 81(5):553-582.http://doi:10.1080/00221546.2010.11779067
Cummings, N., J., Lee, B., J., & Kraut, E., R. (2006). Communication technology and friendship during the transition from high school to college. Carnegie Mellon University 63(7):811-840.http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195312805.003.0018
Leon, M., F., C. (2005). Why do friendships matter for survival? BMJ Publishing Group.http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech.2004.031542
Shafir, H. (2019). How to make female friends (as a woman), Social Self, June 9. https://socialself.com/blog/make-female-friends/