Stress has been defined as “the negative feelings that occurs when an individual feel unable to cope with the demands placed upon them by their environment” (Lazarus and Folkman, 1984). Stress is a thing that is experienced by everyone at some stage of their life. College students represent a group which is particularly sensitive to stress. The transition into college life from a school setting can be challenging for some people. The transition involves moving from top dog to the lowest position. (Stantrock, 2004). In addition to the common stressors experienced by the general population, college students encounter an additional range of stressors: being away from home for the first time, holding down jobs, time management, financial obligations towards fees/ boarding etc, and on a social/emotional level maintaining relationships. (Archer and Lamin, 1985). A disturbing trend in college student health is the reported increase in student stress nationwide (Sax (Simple API for XML) A programming interface (API) for accessing the contents of an XML document. SAX does not provide a random access lookup to the document's contents. It scans the document sequentially and presents each item to the application only one time. , 1997). This is evident in Hirsch and Keniston (1970) study, which looked at the dropout rate of students in university. They estimated that fifty percent of entering students do not finish college four years later. When stress is perceived negatively or becomes excessive, students experience physical and psychological impairment Impairment
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2. (Murphy and Archer, 1996). Stress has a number of sources which can be classified according to the magnitude of the event: cataclysmic events include natural disasters such as floods, life events such a death produce a change that requires adaptation and daily hassles are everyday events that create repetitive distress. (Brannon and Feist, 2007). Daily stressors are "the irritating, frustrating, distressing demands that to some degree characterize everyday transactions with the environment" (Archer and Lamin, 1985).
Many studies have researched what the primary sources of stress are among college students. A study in a university in the united states found that the five highest stressors among the student population were a change in sleeping habits, a change in breaks, a change in eating habits, new responsibilities and increased work load. (Ross, Neilbling and Hecket, 1999). According to Hirsch and Ellis (1966) the pressure to earn good grades and to earn a degree is a very high source of stress among students. Taylor (2009) states that overloaded people who have more tasks in their lives report higher levels of stress than do those who have fewer tasks, which would apply to college students especially around exam time. Kohn and Frazer proposed that too much coursework and unclear assignments also contributed to stress levels. And sgan-Cohen and Lowental (1988) indicated that time pressures and interaction with faculty members were common stressors. It is clear from these studies that college students are particularly prone to stress. Although relationships have been found to influence stress by acting as a buffer against negative outcomes (Sim, 2000), they also present common sources of stress related to peer pressure, navigating romantic relationships, and navigating relationships with parents (Byrne et al., 2007). In a study of Canadian high school students, two of the three categories of stressors mentioned by students from all types of academic tracks involved stress associated with family and friends (Mates and Allison, 1992). The positive or negative effects of family roles depend on the resources people have available. Both men and woman...
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