What we do

Research and Evidence

Research and Evidence

Mental health in students:What are the risk factors? October 2020

  • Higher education students are at high risk of mental health problems.
  • Major risk factors associated with mental health problems in students include:
    • Loneliness.
    • Financial and academic pressures.
    • Pre-existing neurodevelopmental conditions such as ADHD.
    • Chronic physical health conditions.
    • Identifying as 'non-binary' gender.

Coronavirus and higher education students: 25 February to 7 March 2022

  • he average life satisfaction score for students was 6.6 out of 10, which was significantly lower than the adult population in Great Britain (7.0), but not significantly different to 16- to 29-year-olds (6.6).

  • The proportion of students feeling lonely often or always was 17%, significantly higher than the adult population in Great Britain (7%).

  • More than a third (36%) of students reported that their mental health and well-being had worsened since the start of the Autumn 2021 term; a statistically significant increase on late November 2021 (28%).

Decades of research show the culture shock which students can experience when starting university.

Despite being top performing students, our young people have not been equipped effectively to deal with independent academic study and living. Students can experience challenges with academic, money and life which negatively impact progress and happiness, resulting in drop out and mental health issues.   

“We need to empower our students with realistic expectations about university and provide them with the knowledge and tools to have the best first year experience”

—Sally Sandground, My Student Years


  • 27% of students report a mental health issue during uni.
  • 95% end of first year students survey would have liked to know about academic skills before they started
  • 75% would have liked to know about money and budgeting skills before they started
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Community Enterprise
Scottish Tech Army
Field and Lawn Services