Students' experience of stress with different framework conditions and different origins
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Background. Students are exposed to numerous stress factors. The large number of demands and high strain can lead to a higher drop-out rate. For this reason, the aim of the study is to examine and comparing the experience of stress among German and international students during their studies under adaptation to generally stressful conditions. The international students performed a complete study program in Germany. Methods. Data from 194 students (41.8% women, 58.2% men) were evaluated. The average age of the participants was 23.0±3.44 years. Our sample consisted of 80 international students. The questionnaire on strains during the study (and at the workplace) was used. We registered the frequency and the intensity of the stress factors in everyday study life. We factor analysed the 34 stress items, which gave five main stress factors. We then looked at the differences between German and international students on these factors, while adjusting for generally stressful conditions. Results. The most important stressors were unfavourable working hours, incompatibility of tasks, climate, excessive demands, high responsibility, lack of information, social isolation, emotional strain and financial problems. The stressors differed in 17 out of 34 stressors in the groups of students of different origin. The international students experienced more physical and psychosocial strain and they experienced resources less often than German students did, but if they felt them, it was more intense. Conclusions. Strains during studies and their individual demands vary. German and international students have different perceptions of stress during study programs. There is a need for health promotion and prevention programs, which should be integrated during study.