Academic stress is one of the main stressors a type of distress..

Academic means taking different exams, writing different text and completing assignment. Academic stress can be described as a student’s connections with environmental stressors, the student’s cognitive thoughtfulness of and coping with the academic-related stressors, and emotionally or physiological reaction to the stressors.

Sources of Academic Stress –Sources of Academic Stress

  • Lower grade: It is the desire of every student to excel in their field studies as such high grades mean a lot to students. In situations where students believe they expect a higher grade but at the end get a lower grade than they expected it weighs them down and kills the motivation they have. Once this happens students start to think a lot about what they didn't do, where they went and most times are not able to find answers to those questions. At the long run, they become stressed up with that and are not able to do everything right again.
  • Many hours of studies: Every student has a life outside the academic curriculum and environment. When a student has to compromise and use their personal time for other activities for studies, they turn to get bored and lose interest in studies. At the long run, this situation stresses them up which causes them to lose focus on academic work. As the saying goes "all work and no play make Jack a dull boy ", it also applies to students since they will become dull if all they do is to use their private time for studies and not have time for themselves.
  • Language difficulties: Every student has a life outside the academic curriculum and environment. When a student has to compromise and use their personal time for other activities for studies, they turn to get bored and lose interest in studies. At the long run, this situation stresses them up which causes them to lose focus on academic work. As the saying goes "all work and no play make Jack a dull boy ", it also applies to students since they will become dull if all they do is to use their private time for studies and not have time for themselves.
  • Procrastination , as they say, is the thieve of time, one attitude that is very common among a lot of students is procrastination. Procrastination is the avoidance of doing a task which needs to be accomplished. It is the act of accomplishing more pleasurable things set up of less pleasurable ones or completing less critical errands rather than more pressing ones, in this manner putting off approaching assignments to a later time. When student keeps doing this they lose interest in doing that particular task or assignment and once the loss of interest sets in stress follows up since they will be thinking how to meet up with the deadline for the assignment or task.
  • Examinations Periods for examinations causes so much stress in students than one can imagine. Examination is the only means for a student to prove that he deserves a better grade for a course and due to these students think a lot and also revise everything they have learnt during the whole period of the cause, in doing so, some students get confused about some topics they treated and others also don't know where to begin their studies from. The thought of the these stuff makes them frustrated and confused which at the long run stress them up.
  • Missing Lectures It is the desire of students to miss lectures or skip school. Although some students wake up and decide to miss lectures or school, others also have to do that due to circumstances beyond their control. When some students miss class or lectures they become disturbed and worried especially of the course is on they have difficulties in understanding. When this happens theists wonder how they will make up for the lessons they lost so as they will be on the same pace with their fellow colleague in school. The thought of finding ways to make up with lessons which they have issues in becomes a burden and stress them up beyond imagination.
  • Frustration due to misunderstandings Some also misinterpret what the teacher said in a different way or meaning. This frustration leads to students being stressed up because they wonder how they will pass the course because they hardly get what the teachers say in class.

Symptoms of Academic Stress

  • Sleep Disturbance.
  • Inability to Concentrate.
  • Increased Fear or Anxiety.
  • Social Isolation or Withdrawal.
  • Inability to Concentrate.
  • Increased Fear or Anxiety.
  • Social Isolation or Withdrawal.
  • Substance Abuse.
  • Poor Appetite.
  • Low Immunity.
  • Withdrawal from Activities and Friends.
  • Irritability and Impatience.
  • Bed Wetting.
  • Attempts to get out of School.
  • Unusual and Unexplained Crying Spells.
  • Stomach Aches and Digestive Problems.
  • Excessive Worry and Negative Thoughts.
  • Drop in Grades.
  • Health Problems.

There are three kinds of common stress triggers students experience:-

  • Social stress puts serious peer pressure on students. Dealing with new relationships, balancing academic life with social life, living with or without family members, adjusting to the new environment, all trigger stress in students.
  • Academic: Strict schedules, deadlines, low grades, challenging classes, exams, responsibilities, and poor time management all lead to a buildup of academic stress.
  • Daily life: This stress is associated with issues that are not related to academic or social life. These can include daily commute, part-time job, financial burdens, and so on.

Management of Academic Stress

Practical stress management can help students deal with their worries and become more productive, competent and efficient. Here are a few tips for managing stress:-

  1. Proper time management is one of the most effective stress-relieving techniques (Macan et al., 1990). Whether it’s relaxation, work or study, time must be spent wisely. Students must be able to design and stick to a timetable. Choose a relaxing break between work and study, even if it’s just taking out time to breathe.
  2. A healthy lifestyle is essential for students, especially at university level. Instead of partying at night and being cooped up at home studying throughout the day, take out time to get some air and exercise. Stress is generally lower in people who maintain a healthy routine.
  3. If you keep focusing on the negative aspects of a situation, you will be burdened by mental stress (Thompson & Gaudreau, 2008). Instead, try to look at the glass half full, and stay optimistic through tough times. For example, instead of feeling upset over a bad grade, try to maintain a positive attitude and look at ways to improve the next time.
  4. Organization is very important in academic life for dealing with stress (Sinha, 2014). By keeping academic notes organized, turning in assignments on time, and keeping track of all deadlines, stress can be reduced to a great extent.
  5. The best way to stop procrastinating is to get the most difficult tasks out of the way first. Most people procrastinate because they dread the task they’re putting off. Get rid of the dreaded deed, and you’re good to go.
  6. Don’t put too many eggs in one basket. Instead of feeling overwhelmed about all the deadlines, it’s best to make a list and sort them out one by one. This helps you to be more efficient and productive with your time.
  7. A cup of coffee with family or friends is all one need to bring stress levels back to normal. Stress can also get worse if a person feels lonely. By letting out all one's thoughts to someone one trust, one immediately feel a lot better.
  8. Water therapies are effective for reducing stress and relaxing the body (Lewis & Webster, 2014). By drinking lots of water and treating oneself to hot baths, one can help your body relax. By adding aromatic oils in one’s bath, one can double her or his relaxation effect and improve her or his academic performance.
  9. If one feel extremely stressed out, take a break and do something one love. Whether it is painting or listening to music, doing something one enjoy can cheer up his or her mood and distract him or her from a stressor.

Some other stress managements are:-

  • Incorporate more anticipation into one's life.
  • Do regular exercise.
  • Surround himself/ herself with supportive people.
  • Stop comparing oneself with others
  • Learn to be assertive and stand up for himself/ herself.
  • Understand own working environment and his/ her advisor’s expectation.
  • Avoid isolation.
  • Put first things first.
  • Find an industry mentor