School of Behavioral Sciences
Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)
Undergraduates, University, Social Support, Perceived Stress
Counseling | Social and Behavioral Sciences
Winckler, Pearl Joanna, "Considering the Impact of Social Support and Student Perceptions of Life Stress" (2020). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 2579.
Leaving the family home to attend university may be one of the rites of passage into adulthood, and independence for many high school graduates, yet the journey that ensues may be one of self-discovery, excitement, and delectation. Indeed, the college experience is as much about preparing for life event stressors mentally and emotionally as it is about intellectual attainment. The purpose of this study was to determine whether college student’s reported social support is correlated with perceived life stress. The Undergraduate Stress Questionnaire USQ, which is an 83-item checklist was used to measure perceived life stress. Many students may wrestle with life stress, even with strong supportive networks in place. As such, participants were also be asked to complete the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support MSPSS, which is a 12-item measure of social support. This descriptive, correlational study recruited a sample population of 225 students from a University in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. It was hypothesized that there would be a correlation between reported social support and perceived stress (i.e. as a student reports more social support, he or she will in turn report less perceived stress), which was found to be true. Implications of this study include the potential benefit of support networks among this population to decrease overall perceived stress.