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Thesis on coping mechanisms in college life

Find articles by N. Parthasarathy Find articles by R. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract The objective of this study was to examine the coping patterns followed by the junior college students. Further, an extensive effort was done to study the gender differences in coping patterns used by the students.

This study was conducted in Christ College, Bangalore and on the first and second-year students of pre-university studying in either of the branches Bachelor of Arts, Science, or Commerce.

A total of 120 samples were collected from study population of junior college students using the random sampling method.

Thesis on coping mechanisms in college life

The sample comprised, 40 students from each group of Arts, Science, and Commerce, including both of the sexes. The tools such as, socio-demographic data sheet and coping checklist, were used. The study findings revealed that majority of the students adopted emotion- and problem-focused coping strategies. Most of the female students adopted emotion-focused coping strategies, whereas the male students mostly used problem-focused coping strategies.

The students constitute the heart of the education system and they are the most affected ones by the strengths and weaknesses of the education system. The students form an identical subgroup compared to others in the society. Stress is a very familiar condition faced by the students when they are unable to bear the risks involved in higher education. The main sources of stress are academic and time concerns, fear of failure, classroom interactions, and economic issues.

Apart from this, the parental system also affects a lot to these students. The parents have unlimited expectation from their children and therefore they impose their own desires on them. The impact of these influences results thesis on coping mechanisms in college life a number of students reporting emotional problems, anxiety, stress, and other neurotic problems. They are often found in frightening, abusive, depressing, threatening, competitive, unpredictable, and confusing situations.

The percentage of suicides is more among the college students compared to the other ones and these suicides are mostly associated with academic failure or under achievement. Majority of the college students strive and try to handle the stress in a positive way.

  • Half of the students reported low self-esteem;
  • Coping strategies that were significantly applied more often were blaming self or being self-critical, seeking advice and help from others, finding comfort in religion, concentrating effort, distracting by work or activity, and giving up;
  • In the investigation process, a coping checklist with 70 diverse coping pattern, prepared by Rao et al;
  • In the study, distribution of the coping strategies adopted by the college students was examined with respect to their gender background.

Whereas, some of the students do not know, the ways to cope up with their problems and; therefore, adopt unhealthy ways. Thus, the dimensions of coping behaviour should be studied from a development perspective.

The coping could be at an emotional, cognitive, or social support seeking level. The emotional responsiveness grows out of the simple reflexes of planful emotional responsive behaviour, by the age of two or three years. Kopp 1989 described five types of behaviour: Visual or physical avoidance, distraction, self-soothing, problem-oriented, and care-eliciting.

A coping style can be effective at one age but may be totally unsuitable at another age. In the similar way, a particular coping style may be totally appropriate in one situation while inappropriate in another. The flexibility and situation appropriateness of effective coping should be explored further. This may be determined to a large part of cultural expectations on the other hand, individual vulnerabilities set limits to ones coping.

Therefore, it is mandatory to understand that how coping ways adopted by college students differ from other students who experience the significant stress; their perception of handling the psycho-social problems effectively, might help in the planning of intervention services.

Thus, the present study was made to understand the ways in which college students differ in coping with significant stress experienced by the students and to examine the different ways of coping strategies adopted by them.

The research was conducted at the Christ College in Bangalore city. A descriptive research design was used for this study.


In the investigation process, a coping checklist with 70 diverse coping pattern, prepared by Rao et al. In order to compute the difference between the means of two groups male and femalefrequency, percentage, and t-test were used; and to compare the frequencies of certain variables in the two groups, chi-square was used. With regard to the socio-demographic characteristics of the college students, it was observed that majority of the students were aged between 17—18 years, and number of females was slightly more than males.

With respect to the religion, a majority of the students were Hindu, and the least were Islamic, compared to the students belonging to other religion; because most of the people from Islam do not tend to pursue higher education. With regard to birth order of the child, majority of the students were middle born. A multilingual pattern was seen among the students.

It was also noted that, a majority of the respondents spoke other languages at home than Kannada. It was seen that most of the students were from nuclear families, which is a very common trend in urban areas.

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With respect to education background, a majority of the students were from well-educated families, with their fathers being postgraduate and mothers being educated up to higher secondary. The studies also revealed that, the fathers of the respondents were businessmen, whereas mothers were housewives. Coping strategies adopted by college students The coping strategies adopted by college students with regard to stressful events, i.

In the current study, it has been observed that the students used a combination of appraisal-focused and problem-focused coping strategies. Whereas, study by Lazarus[ 23 ] revealed that, problem-focused and emotion-focused coping strategies were used in virtually every stressful encounter.

This proves that the students in adolescence stage were still confused and were not able to choose those coping strategies which were of positive approach to encounter any stress. These findings were supported by the study by O. Languhlin 1984who also reported that resorting to drugs, alcohol, tranquilizers, and sex are more characteristics of inefficient coopers. In the current study, the sample comprised college students belonging to 1 PUC and II PUC, who were still in adolescence stage and these students were not fully exposed to the evils of the society.

In the study, distribution of the coping strategies adopted by the college students was examined with respect to their gender background. The results also revealed that the students irrespective of their gender, used combination of problem-focused and emotion-focused coping strategies. It was found that, out of 70 items, 16 significant responses were used by the students.

It was observed that the female students used emotion-focused coping strategies and sought more social support than males. Also, Hobfall, et al. The findings by Mike and Thoits 1993 suggested that men experience a stoic style of responding to stressors and women have an emotional expressive style. The distribution of coping strategies adopted by college students was examined with respect to different faculties, such as Arts, Science, and Commerce.

It was observed that the students used a combination of appraisal-focused and problem-focused coping strategies. Out of 70 responses, 17 significant responses thesis on coping mechanisms in college life used by students belonging to various faculties. Overall, the total coping repertoires of students belonging to Arts, Science, and Commerce faculties were 37, 38, and 35, respectively.

With respect to gender, the total coping repertoire for male and female students, were 36 and 37, respectively. Murthy 1995 found in her study of working women that they have a coping repertoire of approximately 21. Karen 2000 reported that the total coping repertoire of unsuccessful college students was 37. Footnotes Conflict of Interest: Department of a coping checklist: Coping theory and research past present and future.

Lazarus RS, Folkman S. Stress, appraisal and coping. Stress, coping and support among college student leaders and non-leaders: