Prevalence Of Depression Among University Undergraduate

Project And Seminar Material On Psychology Education

Prevalence Of Depression Among University Undergraduate


Abstract


This study was carried out to examine the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri as a case study. The study was specifically set to ascertain the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri, determine if there is any significance difference in the prevalence of depression among male and female undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri, ascertain the factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri, and find out the effect of depression on the academic achievement of undergraduate students Imo State University, Owerri. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprise of undergraduate students of Imo State University. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 160 respondents and 141 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables and mean scores. While the hypotheses were tested using Chi- square statistical tool. The result of the findings reveals that the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri is high. Furthermore, the study revealed that the factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri includes: stress, loss of parents, financial issues, academic workload, and insecurity. Therefore, it is recommended that professional psychologist and counselor should render psychological interventions using cognitive behavioral techniques to counsel undergraduates students who are depressed so as to help improve their academic performance. To mention but few.


Table of Content


  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

According to World Health Organization (2017), depression is a common mental illness characterized by persistent sadness and a loss of interest in activities that people normally enjoy, accompanied by an inability to carry out daily activities, for 14 days or longer. The exact cause of depression is unknown, however a combination of biological, psychological and social factors are believed to play significant roles (Smith & Segal, 2019). Genetics, chemical imbalance (Gabbey 2017 & Boyers 2017), traumatic life events (Mackenzie 2017, Boyers 2017 & Gabbey 2017), hormones (Kosie, 2018 & Mayo Clinic Staff, 2018), physical brain abnormalities (Boyers, 2017) and Separation of parents (Dawood, Mitsu, Ghadeer & Alrabooh, 2017) are some causes linked to depression. There are various forms/types of depression. They include: Major depression, Persistent depression, Bipolar disorder, Depressive psychosis (Psychotic Depression), Perinatal depression (Postpartum), Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), Situational Depression, Atypical Depression (Pietrangelo, 2018, Goldberg, 2018).

Generally, symptoms of depression are not always easy to recognize. Although depression may occur only once during a person‘s lifetime, some others may have multiple episodes, with symptoms occurring most of the day, nearly every day. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder (DSM-5) highlights the following as symptoms of depression: depressed mood on most days, including feelings of sadness and emptiness, loss of pleasure in previously enjoyed activities, too little or too much sleep most days, unintended weight gain or loss or changes in appetite, physical agitation or feelings of sluggishness, low energy or fatigue, feeling worthless or guilty, trouble concentrating or making decisions and intrusive thoughts of death or suicide (Villines, 2018). However, International classification of disease (ICD)-10 list of depression symptoms includes; depressed mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, reduced energy, marked tiredness after only slight effort, reduced concentration and attention, reduced self-esteem and self-confidence, ideas of guilt and unworthiness, bleak and pessimistic views of the future, ideas or acts of self-harm or suicide, disturbed sleep and reduced appetite (McLeod, 2015). Treatment depends on the severity of the disorder and includes medication, psychotherapy (talk therapy), or both (Gabbey, 2017). Moreover, for college-aged students with depression, the best treatments are usually a combination of antidepressant medications, other medications which are added to enhance the antidepressant effect as well as talk therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy and interpersonal psychotherapy (Mayo Clinic Staff, 2016).

According to Auerbach et al, (2018), depression has become an increasing public health challenge for most undergraduate students as it is widespread among university/college students. A recent review by Ibrahim, Kelly and Glazebrook (2013), the prevalence was reported to be lesser in the general population and higher in the university students even in terms of the severity (Hunt & Eisenberg, 2010) and therefore, impacts their academic achievements and quality of life (January et al., 2018). The passage from youthhood to adulthood comes with lots of stresses in personal life and university/college students are at the forefront of this stage of life (Islam et al., 2018). Life as an undergraduate student is usually a stressful one as students‘ transit to graduation (Dabana & Gobir, 2018). Academic stress, independent living and planning for their future are some challenges university students are faced with (Uehara, Takeuchi, Kubota, Oshima & Ishikawa, 2010) which makes them vulnerable and prone to depression (Shamsuddin et al., 2013).

Tung, Lo, Ho and Tam, (2018) in their study revealed a prevalence of 34% in their sample population. Also, in Nepal, the level of depression was high as observed by Risal, Sanjel & Sharma (2016). In their study which involved only females, almost 40% of the participants had depressive symptoms in varying degree such as 27.4% mild, 9% moderate and 1.4% severe and the frequency of depression was found to be higher in the senior classes than the junior classes. Rathnayake & Ekanayaka (2016) in their Sri Lanka study of undergraduate nursing students showed that 51.1% of the respondents were experiencing different levels of depression. Although several studies have treated the subject of depression in Universities/Colleges, only a few of such studies were done in Nigeria. Thus, this study sought to ascertain the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Depression and other affective disorders continue to be an area primarily ignored by the higher institutions. Countless number of undergraduate may be affected by depression which may also affect academic performance and their quality of life. Depressed students often result in having other behavioral problems like skipping school which may result in poor academic performance. Also undergraduate that are depressed are usually hopeless, have concentration ability difficulty and pay less attention in class and their studies in general and thus may low performance.

Depression has a great effect on undergraduate‘ age and to a large extent students‘ academic performance, is a well-known fact that there is a certain period in student development that they tend to learn faster and whatever they learnt are permanently stamped in their memories. Similarly, there are certain periods in one‘s life that the rate of learning tends to decline that is to say the rate of assimilation is slow, and as such students who are young and depressed may tend to have low academic performance and those who are older may even have a worst case scenario. Similarly, depressed undergraduate from different home background may have different educational outcome that is, student from divorced, separated and single parents are likely to have difficulties with their studies, lower literacy level and display negative attitude to school, in other words, one‘s educational success may depends largely on the parental marital status of his or her family. Therefore, it is important to understand the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The main objective of this study is to examine the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri as a case study. Other objectives of this study is to:

  1. Ascertain the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri.
  2. Determine if there is any significance difference in the prevalence of depression among male and female undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri.
  3. Ascertain the factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri.
  4. Find out the effect of depression on the academic achievement of undergraduate students Imo State University, Owerri.

1.4 Research Question

The study will be guided by the following questions;

  1. What is the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri?
  2. Is there any significance difference in the prevalence of depression among male and female undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri?
  3. What are the factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri?
  4. What is the effect of depression on the academic achievement of undergraduate students Imo State University, Owerri?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

  • Ho: The prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri is low.
  • Ha: The prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri is high.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The outcome of this study would benefit the government, school administrators, psychologist and counselors, parents, public, and students

Government:

The findings of this study would be of significant importance to the government in making educational decisions; the studies would therefore provide government with evidence based data which would help in making appropriate educational decisions and to ensure the reduction of depression among students at all levels of education particularly at university level. The study was also important at state level, because university undergraduate were evaluated by their performance on standardized tests geared toward specific ages and based on a set of performance students in each age group are expected to meet.

School Administrators:

Similarly, school administrators would find the findings of this study of great importance in planning school activities and curriculum to ensure that all the variable (depression) advantages and disadvantages were incorporated for a smooth school planning and administration.

Lecturers:

The findings of this study would expose lecturers to understand how depression in particular can hamper the effort of university undergraduate to achieve high academic performance. Thus exposing them to having the knowledge of who needs more attention and why, how and when

School Psychologist and Counsellors:

Would find the findings of this study very important because they could serve as key players in depression management, gender bias issues, mediators in giving family therapy, which would in turn help improve students‘ academic performance.

Parents:

The findings of this study would be very important to the parents who were concerned with their children‘s education and welfare. It would help parents to understand what they should do to minimize poor academic performance of their children and also know the symptoms and causes of depression so as to take early precaution against repeated episodes or severe depression.

Public:

The findings of this study would be of immense importance to the general public who on daily basis face lots of challenges; this could be achieved if the findings and recommendations of this study would be disseminated to the public through media, conferences, workshops, and seminars.


1.7 The Scope of the Study

The scope of this study dwells on the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate. However the study will be delimited to Imo State University, Owerri.


1.8 Limitations of the Study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. However, the researcher were able to manage these just to ensure the success of this study.

Moreover, the case study method utilized in the study posed some challenges to the investigator including the possibility of biases and poor judgment of issues. However, the investigator relied on respect for the general principles of procedures, justice, fairness, objectivity in observation and recording, and weighing of evidence to overcome the challenges.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Depression:

Depression is a mood disorder that can affect a person’s daily life. It may be described as feelings of sadness, loss, or anger. Depression is a common mental health problem that involves a low mood and a loss of interest in activities.


1.10 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows.

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.

Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri as a case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was to examine the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri as a case study. Specifically the study was set to ascertain the prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri, determine if there is any significance difference in the prevalence of depression among male and female undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri, ascertain the factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri, and find out the effect of depression on the academic achievement of undergraduate students Imo State University, Owerri.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 141 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondents are undergraduate students of Imo State University.


5.3 Conclusions

Based on the findings of this study, the researcher made the following conclusion

  1. The prevalence of depression among university undergraduate using Imo State University, Owerri is high.
  2. There is a significance difference in the prevalence of depression among male and female undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri.
  3. The factors associated with depression among undergraduate students in Imo State University, Owerri includes: stress, loss of parents, financial issues, academic workload, and insecurity.
  4. The effect of depression on the academic achievement of undergraduate students Imo State University, Owerri is negative.

5.4 Recommendations

Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations were made:

  1. Professional psychologist and counselor should render psychological interventions using cognitive behavioral techniques to counsel undergraduates students who are depressed so as to help improve their academic performance.
  2. Lecturers should help identify male undergraduates students with counseling needs and refer them to the professional counselors and psychologist so that these professionals would guide those students by counseling them either in group or individually to understand themselves in relation to the social and psychological world in which live, and also develop ability to overcome and resolve special problems or common difficulties
  3. Schools psychologist and counselor should target depression by teaching coping strategies and this should be targeted towards those female undergraduates students who are at risk for depression.
  4. Professional Counsellors and psychologist, lecturers should work together so as to counsel and expose students of different age groups most especially those within age bracket of 26-29 to the dangers of depression and depressive symptoms which will in turn help in improving their academic performance.
  5. Lecturers, parents, professional Counselors and psychologist should give more attention to undergraduates students of different home background so as to recognize the signs of depression early before the depression interfere with the students‘ interpersonal relationship.

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