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Staff experiences of providing support to students who are managing mental health challenges: a qualitative study from two Australian universities

McAllister, Margaret, Wynaden, Dianne, Happell, Brenda, Flynn, Trudi, Walters, Vicki, Duggan, Ravini, Byrne, Louise, Heslop, Liza and Gaskin, Cadeyrn 2014, Staff experiences of providing support to students who are managing mental health challenges: a qualitative study from two Australian universities, Advances in mental health, vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 192-201.

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Title Staff experiences of providing support to students who are managing mental health challenges: a qualitative study from two Australian universities
Author(s) McAllister, Margaret
Wynaden, Dianne
Happell, Brenda
Flynn, Trudi
Walters, Vicki
Duggan, Ravini
Byrne, Louise
Heslop, Liza
Gaskin, Cadeyrn
Journal name Advances in mental health
Volume number 12
Issue number 3
Start page 192
End page 201
Total pages 11
Publisher eContent Management Pty Ltd
Place of publication Maleny, Qld.
Publication date 2014
ISSN 1838-7357
1837-4905
Keyword(s) Education and training
Mental health challenge
Pastoral care
University
Summary The prevalence and consequences of mental health challenges amongst university students is now widely acknowledged and university staff provide an important but often hidden service to these students. While completing a university degree is important to the student’s long-term outcomes there remains a paucity of literature on the support role provided to these students by staff. To contribute to knowledge in this area, a qualitative exploratory study was completed with academic and professional staff at two Australian universities in 2013. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews with 26 participants to document their experiences and to identify the barriers and enablers to their support role to students. Data were analysed using thematic analysis and four themes emerged: (1) Factors that facilitate initiation of staff support; (2) barriers to providing support; (3) challenges facing staff; and (4) how universities support students with mental health challenges. Staff acknowledged the personal and organisational challenges they experienced but also highlighted the rewards they received associated with the role. The provision of training and the acknowledgement of the hidden role and workload by universities were important to ensuring positive outcomes for this group of students.
Language eng
Field of Research 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
Socio Economic Objective 920410 Mental Health
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2014, eContent Management Pty Ltd
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30072173

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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