What is the effect of stress on students?
The body of empirical research studies is quite consistent with their findings on the effect of stress in the body. The consensus data suggest that stress, if not handled properly, will cause several types of sickness.
Some of the most evident biological effects of stress are heart disease and cancer. But aside from that, stress can also negatively affect the respiratory system. It makes breathing harder.
The effect of stress is not limited to biological aspect but also on psychological dimension. A stressed person may not be able to function effectively. For students, stress can have a very significant impact on their academic endeavor.
The effect of stress on students can be many. Several studies had found that stress has a negative effect on students’ ability to concentrate. If you are a student, you tend to comply with the multi-layered school requirements simultaneously. This burden alone is enough to make you unable to concentrate.
The human brain cannot attend to several stimuli at a single period of time. Thus, cramming is not effective. It can only make things worse.
Generally, there are three common effects of stress on students:
Stress decreases sleep quality
Students who feel stressed have trouble in acquiring sleep. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America found that stressed students have decreased sleep time. In addition, the National Sleep Foundation reports that only about 15 percent of adolescent students get enough amount of sleep. The lack of sleep may result in poor learning, listening, and problem-solving ability.
Helpful Resource: The Art of Studying Less and Achieving More in School
Stress makes students angry
Because stress decreases students’ learning ability, it makes them frustrated. The frustration may then result in another emotional problem. A report from the Mayo Clinic states that stress increases students’ feelings of irritability, anger, and social withdrawal.
Angry students may not only show hostile behavior to their fellow students but also to their teachers or instructors by being deviant from school or class guidelines. Instead of focusing on academic tasks, angry students may focus on their feelings. As a result, school tasks may be difficult for them.
Stress negatively affects grades
Because a stressed student won’t be able to concentrate on school activities, there is a high possibility that s/he may drop out of school. In the American College Health Association National College Health Assessment report alone in 2010, there was 25 percent of students suffered from having a decreased in their grades. Those students also had difficulties to finish their courses.
These are just a few of the negative effect of stress on students. When I was a student though, I only experienced the effect mentioned above (decrease in sleep). It was because, unlike the majority of students, I had my own approach to deal with academic stress.
Helpful Resource: The Quick Scientific Ways To Stop Stress, Worries, and Anxiety
As a student, you have some sort of freedom to direct your own life inside the campus. One of the biggest parts of such freedom is to figure out how you’re going to approach scholastic challenges. Fortunately, you have a good chance to successfully overcome stress.
Time management is what most students need. Finishing your projects or papers ahead of time can make your school life easier. You need to weigh your priorities. Do not waste your time. Schedule everything.
What causes academic stress?
Before I became a teacher I was once a student. That said, I know what it takes to succeed in school. But whatever academic goal a student has, it is always arduous.
There are so many things that could cause stress for students. In this post, I will be sharing what causes academic stress.
1. Tests and major exams
Most students fail or struggle at school not because they don’t have what it takes to succeed academically. The main reason is the wrong study techniques they employ.
Most students do study their lessons when the exam is fast approaching. As a result, they tend to squeeze time to accomplish everything needed to be done. So they end up cramming.
Unfortunately, cramming or multitasking is futile. The reason being is that the brain cannot process multiple information in a single point in time. If you cram, it is most likely that you don’t perform well in the test. It only triggers stress.
Exams are indeed stressful. But if you are wise enough, you can beat the stress by implementing effective study strategies. You can read my book and learn the best ways to study less and succeed more in school. Become a straight-A student while studying less.
Another thing that causes academic stress is homework. If you have a heavy academic load, chances are you have a lot to do both on campus and at home.
I don’t know why but many teachers love giving homework to their students. I don’t like it as a teacher. For years of teaching, I don’t give homework to my students.
Homework adds stress to students. It drains the students’ energy. As a result, they perform poorly in class.
3. Heavy academic load
As long as you can, avoid having the heavy academic load. Just enroll in subjects or courses you can handle throughout the whole semester. Do not bite more than you could chew.
If you force yourself, chances are you’ll end up struggling in your academic journey. You’ll be banging against time and your strength.
Heavy workload certainly a major source of stress for students.
4. Lack of organization
It may seem insignificant but the ability to stay organized is incredibly helpful for students. The lack of organization breeds trouble and stress.
One of the reasons behind cramming is not just procrastination. The major part of it is lack of organization. Students who are poor in this skill often have trouble in their academic.
Organization involves planning and timely execution of the plan. Students who are not organized spend time in things that are not helpful for their studies.
When the examination comes, they cram and tend to accomplish everything. As mentioned, this is not a good practice. It only causes stress. So be organized. Plan everything and always follow the plan.
5. Lack of relaxation
As a student, your primary job is to accomplish all the requirements. But this does not mean that you deprive yourself of “down time”.
The lack of relaxation will not only cause stress but also lead to burnout which in turn could cause a more serious problem.
Finding time to relax is easy if you are following a “to-do-list.” Before you go to school, make sure you know what you need to accomplish for the entire day.
Once you’ve done all the things you put in your list, it’s time to relax. Watch your favorite movie or indulge with nature. Just do whatever makes you happy.
6. Lack of sleep
No matter how busy you are in school, do not deprive yourself of enough sleep. Lack of sleep does not only cause stress but also poor academic performance.
If you are lack of sleep, your brain struggles to focus on class discussions. As a result, you wouldn’t be able to catch up on the important topic.
So whatever you do, try to gain sleep at least 8 hours each night. Sleep plays an important role in memory. Students with better sleep tend to perform better in school.
I hope you learned something from this post. Believe me, the school can only be stressful if you don’t apply effective and right study habits. So change your strategy now.
I’m a licensed psychometrician, author, and blogger. I’m currently working as a University instructor teaching psychology. I love writing and doing psychological research.