The Effects of Mindfulness on Academic Related Anxiety in College Students

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Secrest, Katlyn
Washburn University
Department of Psychology
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The current study focuses on academic anxiety and the impacts of mindfulness practice via cellular applications. Academic anxiety is a feeling of uneasiness or sociopsychological distress in reaction to a school-based situation that can be perceived as negative or threatening (Shakir, 2014). Individuals who experience academic anxiety are at higher risk to experience a variety of mental and physical health issues. Mindfulness, in particular, has been shown to assist in giving students a sense of calm during periods of anxiety and stress, assisted in reducing feelings of shame and increasing understanding of anxiety, staying focused in learning situations, and more self-acceptance when facing difficult situations (Hjeltnes et al., 2015). In the present study, participants were assigned to one of three conditions (Experimental, Active Control, Control). Participants in the Experimental condition completed mindfulness activities daily while those in the Active Control condition completed a stress reducing activity daily. The results of this study showed time to be a significant factor in reducing academic anxiety related symptomology. Individuals who did not engage in mindfulness practices within the study exceeded their baseline anxiety scores at the conclusion of the study.