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Psychological Distress Among University Student: An Exploratory Study

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Background: Public mental health in university setting still gets little attention among health and mental health professionals. Some universities provide health care for the student, but mental health care in particular still hard to find in universities in Indonesia. The importance of student mental health is obvious because mental health problem could risk and hinder the optimal academic performance of student. This study aimed to explore the risk of potential mental health problem among university student through distress level. Method: A number of 495 undergraduate students in Diponegoro University were participated in this study. Distress level was measured using General Health Questionnaire-12 (Cronbach α = .841), descriptive and crosstab analysis were used to analyze the data. Results: The result showed 45.7% of subjects were at risk of having common mental health problems (cut-off score 10/11). Neither gender nor grader were significant in predicting risk category of distress level. (Chi-square = 9.918; df = 5; p = .078 and chi-square = 0.029; df = 1; p = .864 respectively). Conclusion: The proportion of undergraduate students having high psychological distress was high. The finding of the study implies the need of higher concern to provide mental health care to university student. The alternatives of mental health care program need to be proposed.
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Keywords: Distress Level; Mental Health Care; Public Mental Health; Undergraduate Student

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Faculty of Psychology, Diponegoro University, Semarang, 50275, Indonesia

Publication date: April 1, 2017

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