University students are a high-risk group for mental health problems, given that most cases of mental health problems have emerged by the age of 24 (Kessler, Berglund, Demler, Jin, Merikangas, & Walters, 2005; see also Kim-Cohen, Caspi, Moffitt, Harrington, Milne, & Poulton, 2003) and some research suggests that the prevalence of these problems is increasing (Institute for Public Policy and Research [IPPR], 2017).
There’s a lot of focus on the mental health risks for widening participation students. That’s what I’m researching, on behalf of Health Action Campaign. I’d welcome feedback on this from fellow researchers.
Whilst the academic landscape is undoubtedly changing, evidence still suggests that research remains a highly competitive, strenuous and lonely profession. According to Nature, a 2019 study revealed that “more than one-third of respondents (36%) said that they have sought help for anxiety or depression caused by their PhD studies”, a third of which sought this help from places other than their own institution.
We are using this blog to help connect stakeholders across Higher Education interested in student mental health. If you have a project you are working on or an idea you'd like to develop, why not write your own blog post for us?