YOUTH LEISURE ACTIVITIES: A SOCIOLOGICAL RESEARCH OF STUDENTS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SPLIT (CROATIA)
Zorana Šuljug Vučica1, Gorana Bandalović2, Marija Lončar3
1Associate Professor, University of Split, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (CROATIA), firstname.lastname@example.org
2Associate Professor, University of Split, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (CROATIA), email@example.com
3Assistant Professor, University of Split, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, (CROATIA), firstname.lastname@example.org
The study of leisure is one of the most significant phenomena studied by sociology and other social sciences in recent decades. Leisure time can be defined as the time that a person has after fulfilling all his/her professional, familiar, social and physiological obligations, and creates it according to his/her own desires, possibilities and abilities. It is a particularly important segment of the daily life of young people as they are expected to arrange the most of their free time for their own growth and development.
Most authors who study the concept of leisure time emphasize that it must satisfy three functions in the life of young people: rest, leisure and personal development. Thus, leisure is the time that is set aside to fulfill one's personal needs and choices, which does not include the fulfillment of formal obligations. It should provide young people with fun, opportunities to socialize, to learn new skills, and to be active in the life of their local community. Therefore, most of them emphasize that leisure is an important distraction from stress and allows people to rest from everyday worries.
The aim of this research is to examine the ways in which students spend their leisure time and activities and how they arrange them according to their obligations at the faculty. Activities are divided into: sports, entertainment, cultural and educational. The specific aim of the research is to determine if there are statistically significant differences between male and female. The survey was conducted on a sample of 428 students of the University of Split at 12 different faculties during April 2019.
Most respondents have up to four hours of leisure time per day. There is a slightly higher percentage of those expressing dissatisfaction with the amount of free time. Almost all respondents surf the internet daily and spend time on social networks, while only a third of them watch television every day. Among other activities, students attend night clubs and cafes in the largest percentage, while almost half of the respondents attend cultural events (usually sport events, cinemas and concerts) only 1 to 2 times a year. A significant number of respondents are engaged in sports activities (such as recreational activities and going to the gym) daily or several times a week. There is also a significantly small number of respondents who spend their free time being engaged in additional educational activities (courses, workshops…).
Leisure time also includes interactions with other people. Respondents thus spend most of their free time interacting with friends on a daily basis and are extremely satisfied with their relationships with them. Finally, research has shown that leisure activities affect students' quality of life and their satisfaction with it.
Keywords: Leisure, activities, youth, students, sociological research.
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