Knowledge And Practice Of Stress Management Among Students In College Of Agriculture Jalingo

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Knowledge And Practice Of Stress Management Among Students In College Of Agriculture Jalingo


Abstract


Stress could lead to psychological and physical breakdown, thereby causing burnout among individuals. There is need to assess their stress management practices to reduce the deadly consequences on their health, hence the need for this study on the knowledge and practice of stress management among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo. Three specific objectives guided the study. The study employed a qualitative descriptive survey design, using a questionnaire as the instrument for eliciting data from the respondents. Data were descriptively summarized with the use of frequency, percentages and tables.The results of this study revealed that the major sources of stress among students were the academic activities, role-based challenges and task execution, changing nature of relationship with other people, and home and school interface. This affected them and caused loss of concentration, poor interpersonal relationship, eating disorder. The study also revealed that the most preferred stress management practices among the students were building group norms of cooperation not competition, indulging in hobbies, leisure activities, and recreation, planning instead of responding to pressure, build satisfactory relationship with lecturers, and developing peer support.

 


Table of Content


Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title Page
  • Declaration
  • Approval
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of Content

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

  • 1.1 Background to the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of Problem
  • 1.3 Objectives of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Definition of Terms

Chapter Two

2.0 Literature Review

  • 2.1 Conceptual Review
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.2.1 Transactional Model
  • 2.2.2 Health Realization or Innate Model
  • 2.3 Stress Management Strategies
  • 2.4 Empirical Studies
  • 2.5 Summary of Literature Review

Chapter Three

3.0 Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Research Setting
  • 3.3 Target Population
  • 3.4 Sampling
  • 3.5 Sampling Technique
  • 3.6 Instruments for Data Collection
  • 3.7 Validity of Instrument
  • 3.8 Reliability of Instrument
  • 3.9 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.10 Method of Data Analysis

Chapter Four

4.0 Results and Discussion

  • 4.1 Results
  • 4.2 Discussion

Chapter Five

5.0 Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendations
  • References
  • Appendix

Chapter One


1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

Stress refers to physical or mental overexertion. It is a form of pressure or adverse influences and circumstances that disturbs the natural physiological balance of the body. Stress imposes unusual demands on an organism. Stress occurs when there are demands on the person which task or exceed the person‟s adjustive resources.

On the other hand, stressor constitutes of things that causes stress (i.e. factors that causes stress). Some conditions such as military combat, imprisonment, natural disasters (such as flood and fire, disabling injuries, incapacitating illness, terminal illness such as advanced cancer, or death of a loved one) are all regarded as universal stressors. Many environmental situations are not stressful for everyone and reactions to such stressors depend on the kind of person one is, for example, being evaluated in examinations. Generally, stimuli that cause stress are called stressor.

They include emotional crisis, physical trauma, infection, physical restraint, extremes of heat or cold, etc.
Stress management involves the skill of controlling, directing or planning stress. Stress management strategies scales up an individual‟s psychological response to stress which is referred to as „stress reaction‟. Stress reaction often involves or stimulates behavioral attempts to deal with the stressor or with stress itself. Information or knowledge about stress, adopting correct attitude towards it and possession of skills in stress management among undergraduates (of any university) is very important for healthy, happy life and produces conducive environment for scholarship.

There have been many studies [1-4], which reported strong relationship between stress and undergraduates academic performance. Some individuals are more sensitive to some stressors than others, so the person‟s characteristics and behavior patterns must be looked at to determine their vulnerability to stress.

The experience of stress in human beings is universal, but there are also marked individual differences in how stress is experienced. According to Altmaier [5], stress has been known “to be the fuel the body uses to meet the challenges of our fast-paced modern life, although for others, it is the aversive by- product of such a life.” Stress has been associated with major life events, daily life hassles, and changes in life. Stress is created by excessive environmental and internal demands that need constant effort and adjustment.

The transition of moving to university and leaving home can be an added stressor for an undergraduate student. There are many first-year students who deal with being home-sick, whether it is mild and self-limiting or profound, creating grief and anxiety. There is a loss of control for students who are attending school and have to adapt to a different climate, new language, behavior, and social customs. The changes and transition are stressful for students because of this new environment. Fisher [2], notes that undergraduate students who are passive and mildly depressed prior to leaving home have been found to be those most likely to show raised level of homesickness following the move to university.

Many people recognize that stress comes in the form of negative tension that is caused by someone or something. Those who recognize stress as negative tension fail to realize that stress can generate a positive reaction to a stimulus. The positive reaction of stress can drive individuals to achieve and to test their potential to its fullest. Stress can be a positive aspect of learning. According to Robert and White [6], if students experience stress as a challenge, they can exhibit an increased capacity to learn. Many experiences distress rather than challenges which can lead students to feel threatened and helpless.

Academic work may reflect some of the high level of stress that undergraduate students have reported. For instance, most undergraduate students experience grade pressures that cause them to have problems with stress. Too much stress can interfere with a student‟s preparation, concentration and performance. Yet, positive stress can be helpful to students by motivating them out of weak performance.

Schafer [7] had observed that when individuals fall short of their own or others‟ expectations in schools, job, athletics or any other activity, one risks both external and internal costs, threat to academic or career prospects, disapproval, rejection, humiliation, guilt, and a low to the self-esteem. Thus, fear of failure can help motivate the students to prepare and perform well, yet, sometimes fear of failure can become extreme, which then creates unnecessary stress.

One of the main causes to academic stress is test anxiety. Most undergraduate students seem to emotionally vulnerable to examinations related stress. Increased anxiety from tests has a debilitating effect on their performance. When information generated by worrying about the test reduces the capacity available for performing the tasks, the result is that performance breaks down and the result becomes self-confirming [2].


1.2 Statement of Problem

Some of the effects students have from the stressors can be characterized by a lack of overt skills in handling a stressful situation. This can be marked also by poor performance or avoidance because students lack the skill to deal with these stressors. Stress management techniques usually filter out some of the stress and equip individuals to cope with stress situations.

There are a variety of coping skills that can be used to help students with stress. One of the first ways to begin coping and managing stress is, knowing what ones physical and emotional limits are in order to eliminate negative stress that may occur in life. This is also applicable to students. He or she needs to identify the cause of the stress. As noted by Greenberg and Valetutti [4] a strong psychological adjustment on the part of an individual is known to effectively help offset the dysfunctional effects of stress. The coping skills selected by an individual or a student to stress situation need to be techniques that are available and ought to be among one of the best coping skills that meet such needs.

As applicable to other universities, students of College of Agriculture, Jalingo also encounter some level of stress as they attend to their daily schedules as students. The level of stress in College of Agriculturehas made the studentsto often jokingly refer to the school as “Uni-Stress”. Against the above background, it is important to investigate the subject of knowledge and practice of stress management among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo with a view to proffering relevant measures to address shortcomings.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to assess the knowledge and practice of stress management among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo, Taraba state.

Specifically, the following objectives will guide the study;

  1. To investigate the most common sources of stress among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo
  2. To determine the effects of stress on students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo
  3. To identify the most preferred stress management practices to reduce stress among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions were formulated to guide the study based on the research objectives;

  1. What are the most common sources of stress among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo?
  2. What are the effects of stress on students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo?
  3. What are the most preferred stress management practices to reduce stress among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo?

1.5 Hypothesis

HO1: There is no significant relationship between knowledge and practice of stress management among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo, Taraba state


1.6 Significance of the Study

This study will be of great significance to the schools, students and the academia. From the findings of this study, students would be provided adequate information to enable deal successfully with challenges of stress and burnout. It will also be relevant to the students by providing more insight that could influence the formulation and implementation of policies that will ensure maximum support for students in academic settings. Information from this study will fill the gap on the body of knowledge related to stress management, and also contribute to the existing knowledge on the concerned issues.


1.7 Definition of Terms

Stress:

Is a feeling of emotional or physical tension, often resulting as a reaction to a challenge or demand, such as among students due to academic or anxiety related factors

Stress Management:

Refers to a wide spectrum of techniques and psychotherapies aimed at controlling a person’s level of stress, especially chronic stress, usually for the purpose of and for the motive of improving everyday functioning, in this case among the students.

Stress Management Practices:

These refers to the strategies that students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo adopt to manage the stress associated.


Chapter Five


5.0 Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Summary

The primary objective of the knowledge and practice of stress management among students in College of Agriculture, Jalingo. A qualitative descriptive survey design and 120 students were used. A questionnaire was developed according to the objectives of the study to guide in the generation of information. Socio-demographic characteristics of the respondents and the research question were analyzed using simple frequency and percentage.

Results revealed that the sources of stress among students were shown to include academic work and activities (95.5%), role-based challenges and task execution (93.2%), changing nature of relationship with other people (79.5%), academic calendar and tests (84.1%), and home and school interface (87.5%). From the findings, the effects of stress on students were shown to include headache (56.2%), anger (70.7%), tiredness (69.0%), low self-esteem (50.0%), being absent more than usual (75.9%), loss of concentration (84.5%), poor interpersonal relationship (73.9%), and eating disorder (62.5%). From the findings, the most preferred stress management practices were building group norms of cooperation not competition (94.8%), indulging in hobbies, leisure activities, recreation (93.1%), planning instead of responding to pressure (84.9%), build satisfactory relationship with lecturers (85.9%), and developing peer support (80.7%).


5.2 Conclusion

This study concludes that stress amongst students at College of Agriculture, Jalingowith its adverse effect on students‟ learning and academic performance calls for adequate attention. This is to mitigate failure in examination, mental disorder and high rate of school dropout which could have negative effects on the state and nation at large. Consequently, stress management techniques should as a matter of priority, be provided to College of Agriculture, Jalingostudents to aid learning.


5.3 Recommendations

The following recommendations were made based on the findings of the study;

  1. Students should be informed in advance of what difficulties they might face and encourage them to develop their own strategies to achieve personal goals during the orientation week of freshers.
  2. The school management should add stress management skills into the school curriculum or through seminars and workshops or through interactive session between the student and the school authorities to enlighten and educate undergraduates on stress management.
  3. Improving campus mental services and organizing peer counseling and self-help group can be of help in managing stress.
  4. The school management should create a friendly lecture / students’ relationships so that students can approach lectures, quiz and examinations with some measure of ease.
  5. Finally, before these students leave their high/secondary school, it is important to inculcate into them stress management skills so that they would graduate from their secondary schools with the fore knowledge of stress management skills, there would not be a challenge of stress on gaining admission into the higher institution.

Knowledge And Practice Of Stress Management Among Students In College Of Agriculture Jalingo


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Frequently Asked Questions


Which coping mechanisms do students use to manage stress?

The most frequently used coping mechanism was problem solving. The study found that age, GPA, education level and residence are good predictors of the use of transference as a coping behaviour. Conclusion: A moderate level of stress among students illustrates the need for stress management programs and the provision of suitable support.

How does stress affect students’ academic achievement and wellbeing?

As a psychosocial phenomenon, stress affects students’ academic achievement and wellbeing. Coping mechanisms help students deal with the challenges arising from stress.

How does the level of stress affect students’ coping behavior?

The level of stress becomes higher the students will use more coping behavior. In the contrast, there was a negative professional; knowledge and skills. As the income increased the level of stress reduced.

What is the level of stress among nursing students?

This study explains the level of stress a nd coping behavior among nursing students. The stress level among students was moderate. Moreover, the moderate level of stress was caused by; assignments and workload, teachers and nursing staff, peer and daily life, and finally stress from taking c are of patients.  

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