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Exploring the feasibility and acceptability of the contents, design, and functionalities of an online intervention promoting mental health, wellbeing, and study skills in Higher Education students

Published on Dec 1, 2019in International Journal of Mental Health Systems1.99
· DOI :10.1186/s13033-019-0308-5
Marietta Papadatou-Pastou11
Estimated H-index: 11
(UoA: National and Kapodistrian University of Athens),
Lauren Campbell-Thompson + 5 AuthorsPatapia Tzotzoli2
Estimated H-index: 2
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Abstract
Substantial numbers of students in Higher Education (HE) are reporting mental health difficulties, such as mild to moderate symptoms of depression and anxiety. Coupled with academic skills challenges, these difficulties can lead to decreased academic performance, low levels of study satisfaction, and eventually drop out. Student support services are facing budget cuts and can only attend to limited numbers of students, usually the ones who present with more severe mental health problems. Moreover, face-to-face contact may not appeal to those students who feel embarrassed by their problems or are afraid of being stigmatised. To address this important problem, an online psychological wellbeing and study skills support system called MePlusMe, has been developed to provide personalised support to its users. In the present study we investigated the feasibility and acceptability of the contents, design, and functionalities of the system. An offline version of the system was introduced to 13 postgraduate and undergraduate students (mean age = 31.3 years, SD = 10.25 years; 4 males) in a UK HE Institution, who presented with mild or moderate mental health difficulties. The participants evaluated the design of the system, its functionalities, and contents at Baseline and at Weeks 2, 4, and 8. Participants found the system easy to use, professional, and efficient and its contents non-judgemental and informative. Participants stated that engaging with and practicing the techniques targeted at mental health difficulties led to improvements in positive thinking and self-confidence, while the study skills techniques were practical. Suggestions for further improvement included the development of an app and an option for direct engagement with professionals. The findings confirmed the acceptability of the contents, design and functionalities of the system, while providing useful information to inform its further development. Next steps include a feasibility study, which will test and quantify the effects on everyday functioning, mood, mental wellbeing, and academic self-efficacy after using the system, and subsequently a randomized controlled trial, which will evaluate its effectiveness.
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References52
Newest
Randy P. Auerbach23
Estimated H-index: 23
(Columbia University),
Philippe Mortier10
Estimated H-index: 10
(Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)
+ 18 AuthorsPenelope Hasking28
Estimated H-index: 28
(Curtin University)
Objectives: Comorbidity is a common feature of mental disorders. However, needs assessment surveys focus largely on individual disorders rather than on comorbidity even though the latter is more important for predicting suicidal thoughts and behaviors. In the current report, we take a step beyond this conventional approach by presenting data on the prevalence and correlates (sociodemographic factors, college-related factors, and suicidal thoughts and behaviors) of the main multivariate profiles ...
Published on Apr 1, 2019in Internet Interventions
Peter Musiat10
Estimated H-index: 10
('KCL': King's College London),
Rachel Potterton2
Estimated H-index: 2
('KCL': King's College London)
+ 24 AuthorsGudrun Wagner20
Estimated H-index: 20
(Medical University of Vienna)
Abstract Background Mental disorders and their symptoms are highly prevalent in the university student population, and the transition from secondary to tertiary education is associated with a rise in mental health problems. Existing web-based interventions for the prevention of common mental disorders in student populations often focus on just one disorder and have not been designed specifically for students. There is thus a need for transdiagnostic, student-specific preventative interventions t...
Published on Dec 1, 2018in International Journal of Mental Health Systems1.99
Alexia Barrable1
Estimated H-index: 1
(Dund.: University of Dundee),
Marietta Papadatou-Pastou11
Estimated H-index: 11
(UoA: National and Kapodistrian University of Athens),
Patapia Tzotzoli2
Estimated H-index: 2
Background Dealing with psychological and study skill difficulties can present a challenge for both Higher Education (HE) students, who suffer from them, but also for HE Institutions and their support services. Alternative means of support, such as online interventions, have been identified as cost-effective and efficient ways to provide inclusive support to HE students, removing many of the barriers to help-seeking as well as promoting mental health and wellbeing.
Published on Nov 1, 2018in Health Economics2.03
Anika Reichert2
Estimated H-index: 2
(Ebor: University of York),
Rowena Jacobs20
Estimated H-index: 20
(Ebor: University of York)
Recently, new emphasis was put on reducing waiting times in mental health services as there is an ongoing concern that longer waiting time for treatment leads to poorer health outcomes. However, little is known about delays within the mental health service system and its impact on patients. We explore the impact of waiting times on patient outcomes in the context of Early Intervention in Psychosis (EIP) services in England from April 2012 to March 2015. We use the Mental Health Services Data Set...
Published on Oct 1, 2018in Journal of Abnormal Psychology5.52
Randy P. Auerbach23
Estimated H-index: 23
(Columbia University),
Philippe Mortier10
Estimated H-index: 10
(Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)
+ 15 AuthorsPenelope Hasking28
Estimated H-index: 28
(Curtin University)
Increasingly, colleges across the world are contending with rising rates of mental disorders, and in many cases, the demand for services on campus far exceeds the available resources. The present study reports initial results from the first stage of the WHO World Mental Health International College Student project, in which a series of surveys in 19 colleges across 8 countries (Australia, Belgium, Germany, Mexico, Northern Ireland, South Africa, Spain, United States) were carried out with the ai...
Published on Jul 4, 2018in British Journal of Guidance & Counselling0.72
Emma Broglia2
Estimated H-index: 2
(University of Sheffield),
Abigail Millings10
Estimated H-index: 10
(University of Sheffield),
Michael Barkham61
Estimated H-index: 61
(University of Sheffield)
Background: with reports continually demonstrating increased demand and severity of student mental health needs, it is important to gain a fuller understanding of the impact on embedded student counselling services. Aims: to identify (1) service similarities; (2) factors which impact on services; (3) characteristics of service users; and (4) identify the use of therapeutic technology (e.g. online self-help). Methods: an online survey was completed by 113 heads of UK student counselling services ...
Published on May 4, 2018in Journal of Mental Health2.60
Sarah Ketchen Lipson7
Estimated H-index: 7
(UM: University of Michigan),
Daniel Eisenberg31
Estimated H-index: 31
(UM: University of Michigan)
AbstractBackground: Mental health problems are highly prevalent in university populations and have been shown to impair academic performance. Yet little is known about the ways in which mental health influences academic outcomes in higher education.Aims: This study seeks to offer new insight into the relationship between mental health and academic performance, focusing on students’ academic experience and expectations as interrelated mechanisms.Method: Data come from 3556 students at four campus...
Published on Jan 1, 2018in Health1.48
Rhianna Goozee3
Estimated H-index: 3
,
Marietta Papadatou-Pastou11
Estimated H-index: 11
+ 2 AuthorsPatapia Tzotzoli2
Estimated H-index: 2
An increasing number of higher education students face mental health difficulties, but the universities’ student support services (SSS) struggle to meet demand with limited resources. Web-based alternatives hold promise as a novel medium through which students could access support. Online interventions appear to be effective and may therefore provide a cost-effective alternative, relieving some of the burden on struggling SSS. This paper presents results from an explorative survey of 61 students...
Published on Dec 1, 2017in International Journal of Mental Health Systems1.99
Marietta Papadatou-Pastou11
Estimated H-index: 11
(UoA: National and Kapodistrian University of Athens),
Rhianna Goozee3
Estimated H-index: 3
+ 2 AuthorsPatapia Tzotzoli2
Estimated H-index: 2
Background Recent evidence suggests that there is an increasing need for accessible and anonymous services to support higher education (HE) students suffering from psychological and/or academic difficulties. Such difficulties can lead to several negative outcomes, including poor academic performance, sub-optimal mental health, reduced study satisfaction, and dropout from study. Currently, universities in the UK lack financial resources and the on-campus mental health services traditionally offer...
Published on May 1, 2017in Research Policy5.42
Katia Levecque16
Estimated H-index: 16
(UGent: Ghent University),
Frederik Anseel21
Estimated H-index: 21
(UGent: Ghent University)
+ 2 AuthorsLydia Gisle7
Estimated H-index: 7
Research policy observers are increasingly concerned about the potential impact of current academic working conditions on mental health, particularly in PhD students. The aim of the current study is threefold. First, we assess the prevalence of mental health problems in a representative sample of PhD students in Flanders, Belgium (N = 3659). Second, we compare PhD students to three other samples: (1) highly educated in the general population (N = 769); (2) highly educated employees (N = 592); an...
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