Stress in college student: Causes and effects of stress


Stress comes as a result of both internal and external pressures that exceed one’s ability to cope with their current situation. For many young people college life is one of the best parts of their life since it is an exciting time for them to explore their abilities. However, these critical years at times turn out to be years of stress, anxiety and depression. Students face various stressors such as new environments, heavy workloads and a myriad of other issues.

This is a clear indication that the life of a student is not necessarily exciting but is one that has many challenges which they have to cope up with and if they are unable to, these challenges can affect them adversely in various spheres of their lives. This paper looks at a number of causes of stress in the life of student.


With any adolescent, college life is one of the most interesting and memorable experience they can ever have.

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College is where the adolescent enjoys a vivacious environment combined with the company of peers and a number of academic and extra-curricular activities which enriches them with knowledge and equips them with necessary skills to prepare them for adulthood. However, looking closely at the life of college students we can see that these students face a number of challenges in their daily lives and thus unveils the whole idea of college life being exciting and vibrant. This day to day challenges may be as a result of relationship issue, personal reasons, or environmental and academic issues.

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The above mentioned issues contribute to the student being stressed and if the issues are not dealt with they can escalate and the results are at times fatal. Given that we are in a technology era, students handle stress differently unlike in the 20th century (Sathya 2015). Thus this research aims at identifying some of the causes of stress to college students, how they cope with the stress and the extent to which stress affects their academic performance, health and social lifestyles.

Academic life of college students

The academic life of a student is one of the leading causes of stress. For instance, many at times a student has to rush from one lecture hall in one part of campus to another lecture hall as they try to catch their next class in time. At times the student’s classes are scheduled to happen back-to-back making them to have minimal or no time to have a meal at all. So it is already three and the student has come from their last class and they have not eaten yet and they are extremely hungry. Since the student has three mid-semester examinations to read for and over 200 pages of backlog to read. The student has over three assignments due tomorrow and they are supposed to meet up for the study group tonight to make refined changes on their project.

From the above schedule it is indisputable that the academic life of a student can make someone tensed up. But it is a reality that those are the hectic schedules that students have to meet nowadays. In the process the students end up feeling frozen, lost, or even overwhelmed and unable to cope up with the busy life (Sathya 2015). Such busy schedules co-curricular activities and crammed studies take toll on many student both physically and mentally especially if the student is not eating properly and having enough rest. If this routines go on for a while, they end up compounding and lead to high levels of stress.

Relationships among college students

Relationship refers to how people are related or connected and this relation may be through adoption, marriage or through blood. The bond created between individual can turn out to be a burden to students while other students become victims of relationship abuse. College life is an open kind of life and there is no restrictions to relationships. Boy-girl relationships are witnessed in this phase of life and in many cases this relationships are romantic relationships. In some cases romantic relationships end up being abusive and this is where one party uses a coercive or oppressive practice to dominate over the other partner (Lakyntiew 2014). In this kind of relationship abuse can be sexual, money related or even physical abuse. There is also a relationship between students living together and they are mostly referred to as roommates. Roommates are likely to experience some form of conflicts as a result of individual issues. As a result of abusive relationships or conflicts students always end up being stressed about the occurrences in their lives and they begin to think about ways of solving their problems and their thoughts can a times be suicidal.

It is clear that the life of a college student is not fun filled as many could say. The academic life, the relationships students have amongst each other can be challenging of not well handled. These are day to day activities for any student and they may seem to be the norm of college life but in many cases they take a great toll on this students. Whether bright or average student no one is spared when it comes to college life since there are many issues that one has to handle away from academics that can also be stressful.


  • Lakyntiew, P. (2014). Stress Levels of College Students: Interrelationship between Stressors and Coping Strategies, Journal Of Humanities And Social Science, 19(8), 40-46.
  • Sathya, D. (2015). A Study on Stress and Its Effects on College Students, International Journal of Scientific Engineering and Applied Science, 1 (7), 449-456.
Updated: Oct 08, 2021
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Stress in college student: Causes and effects of stress. (2021, Oct 08). Retrieved from

Stress in college student: Causes and effects of stress essay
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