Students in a Good Head Space at Griffith College

Students in a Good Head Space at Griffith College

As you prepare your students to embark upon this exciting chapter in their lives, be aware that a significant number of students go through some kind of anxiety and depression when entering higher education institutions after high school.


Research has shown that:

  • 65% of students are well adjusted and show moderately low psychological distress
  • 14% show a decrease in psychological distress from anticipation of commencement to the end of the first trimester
  • 11% are the “culture shocked” where a substantial peak in psychological distress occurs in trimester 1 to 3
  • 10% consistently show psychological distress

Some of the major causes are:

  • Unfamiliar academic environment, language challenges, variations to styles of teacher/student interaction
  • Living off-campus when coming from a different background and not being accustomed to independence; unfamiliar daily routines like cooking, budgeting, cleaning, managing households, relationships and commencing employment
  • Hesitancy in seeking help due to cultural perceptions, delays in help as a result of stigmas associated with fear of “losing face” or reputation; hesitancy in disclosing personal problems and information are all motives for why international students avoid the use of counselling services

This is a worldwide scenario with students entering higher education, whether domestic or foreign students.

Griffith College is here for the students

The counselling and support services available at Griffith College, focus on supporting students navigate their way through their studies while here. Support is multi-faceted but generally comes in the form of academic support with the Student Learning Advisors (SLAs) and personal/welfare support, via the Student Counsellors in conjunction with teachers and other staff.

The frontline approach by Griffith College in relation to counselling is not about just offering solutions, but working with the student to develop and adopt positive habits to help them find their own way forward. Ultimately, developing a sense of wellbeing assists with academic achievement.

It has also been our experience, that students who have a sense of belonging and purpose, developing friendships, will do better with their academic pursuits.

What to expect in terms of support at Griffith College:

  • Easy access to support staff (Counsellors and SLAs).
  • Early Intervention
  • Ongoing personal counselling including help with developing stress management techniques and plans.
  • Help with developing wellbeing plans.
  • In class presentations which focus on wellbeing (identifying and addressing anxiety, depression, health, time management, communication).
  • Referral services to Griffith University Health, Welfare and Medical Services (Doctors and Counsellors).
  • Welfare assistance services such as assisting with finding accommodation, part time jobs, help with rental issues, employment issues and budgeting.
  • Access to disability services (preferable if students raise this prior to arrival).
  • Complete confidentiality and respect for privacy.

Further to this, preparedness is something that is often overlooked as a way to help with a sense of wellbeing. Therefore, before students arrive in Australia and at the College, we would suggest as agents you prepare them with some research and planning for accommodation, transport, budget, phone, food requirements, study etc. We have a plenty of material we can share with you in this regard.

It is important to acknowledge things will be different and that it will take time to adjust (usually 2 months approximately), but that does not mean it won’t be enjoyable!