Beliefs underlying stress reduction and depression help-seeking among college students: An elicitation study

Marco Yzer, Julie Gilasevitch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: This study illustrates how a theory-based approach can identify college students’ beliefs about stress reduction activities and help-seeking for depression. These beliefs are the basis for intervention design. Participants: A sample of 53 undergraduate students at a public university in the Midwest participated in this research during March 2016. Methods: An open-ended belief elicitation survey was administered online. Beliefs were identified through qualitative thematic analyses. Results: Exercise was students’ most preferred stress reduction activity. Beliefs about exercise emphasized physical benefits yet also not having time for exercise. Beliefs about help-seeking for depression emphasized treatment efficacy, support from others, stigma, and time constraints. Conclusions: Whereas beliefs about positive outcomes inform educational and motivational messages, beliefs about time constraints underscore the need to also consider structural factors that can help students find time to attend to their well-being.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-160
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of American College Health
Volume67
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 17 2019

Keywords

  • Belief elicitation
  • college students
  • depression help-seeking behavior
  • reasoned action theory
  • stress management

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

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