Student experiences in a university/college setting compared to an employee/employer setting in terms of risk to mental health

The purpose of this research is to investigate whether parallels exits between a student’s experiences in a university/college setting compared to an employee/employer setting in terms of risk to mental health. This study has been undertaken as an extension of the use of a measure developed by researchers at SFU, Guarding Minds @ Work (GM@W), that is used by employers to identify areas of psychosocial risk in the workplace. The university experience can be thought of as similar to a workplace environment with certain inherent psychosocial risk factors. Similarities can be drawn between the work and university experience in terms of stresses, performance expectations, power relationships and many other factors. The original GM@W resource was designed by mental health and legal experts to provide employers and employees with information and tools to create and sustain a psychologically healthy work environment. We have tailored the questions to be more indicative of a university experience. The study will provide a deeper understanding of psychosocial risks in the university context that could lead to improved support for student mental health and better prepare them for future work experiences.

It is well-established that the rate of suicide is much greater in males than in females, being approximately 3 times greater on average, and as great as 6 times higher in certain age groups. The reasons for the high rate of suicide amongst males is now well understood, however various theories have been advanced. This study is undertaking a review of trends over time in rates and patterns of suicide in Canadian males using datasets collected by national agencies in Canada. This project is identifying key information within epidemiological data that is relevant for policy and can help guide efforts at preventing suicide and intervening with groups who may be at high risk and in which there may be good opportunities to reduce suicide rates.

Project Lead(s):

Vitaliy Chernenko, Elliot Goldner

Partners:

Simon Fraser University Health & Counselling Services

Contact Info:

Contact CARMHA for more information

2013