How can we recognize and respond effectively to students in distress?
What to look for in students:
- Significant changes in academic performance, including deterioration in quality of work, frequent missed assignments, excessive procrastination, or avoidance of classroom participation.
- Increased class absences or tardiness.
- Listlessness, lack of energy, of falling asleep in class.
- Unusual or bizarre behaviours, including explained crying, laughing to self, very rapid speech, disorganized thinking, suspiciousness.
- Significant weight loss or weight gain.
- Complaints about physical symptoms, including nausea, stomach aches, headaches, or problems with eating or sleeping.
- Marked changes in personal hygiene or dress.
- Direct or indirect references to suicide or intention to harm or kill another person.
- Changes or disturbances in personal relationships.
- Visible signs of anxiety or depressed mood.
- Talking explicitly about hopelessness or suicide.
- Difficulty concentrating, difficulty carrying on normal conversation.
- Social isolation, social withdrawal or excessive dependency on Dons, Professors, or TA's.
- Excessive sleeping, internet use/gaming.
- Significant changes in personal, sexual, or cultural identity.