UK undergraduates experienced prolonged, high levels of psychological distress during the pandemic.
Experts tracked 554 undergraduates between May 2020 and May 2021, and asked about mental health and wellbeing at four key periods during that time.
Scores measuring psychological distress went up from a pre-pandemic, normative mean score of 4.70 to an average of 12.59. Students also reported lower levels of wellbeing, happiness and life satisfaction compared to before the pandemic.
Co-author, Professor Jerome Carson elaborates: ‘The very ingredients that contribute towards flourishing and happiness were stripped away. Students experienced heightened loneliness and social isolation.’
The authors go on to suggest that, considering the wide-spread changes to higher education since the pandemic, more needs to be done to support students.
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