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Individual differences play a salient and vital role in the person's responses to different stressors. Hence, various individuals are expected to differ in health outcome resulting from encountering stressful situations. This study aimed at identifying personality traits in Sudanese university students and investigating the nature of the relationship between these traits and psychological disturbances measured by the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28-item version, Goldberg & Williams, 1988). The Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ-R, 48 items, Eysenck, Eysenck,& Barrett, 1985) was used to assess personality traits. One hundred psychology students (mean age 23.7) participated in the study. The majority (80%) of the students were females. The results revealed a strong positive relationship between neuroticism (N) on one hand and somatic symptoms, anxiety and depression on the other hand. Extraversion (E) was negatively related to anxiety, depression, somatic symptoms and social dysfunction. No significant sex or age difference was found in psychological disturbances measured by the GHQ or in personality traits – apart from a positive association between E and age. Unlike studies carried out in other countries which showed females to be more anxious and more neurotic, the present study did not find sex differences in anxiety and neuroticism. When a cutoff point of 4 was used, 20% of the students were classified as psychiatric cases. This may indicate the widespread prevalence of psychological disorders amongst Sudanese university students.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2004-01-01

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