US campus counselling centres seeing more students with severe psychological problems

April 8, 2011

According to an annual report by the US-based Association for University and College Counseling Center Directors, 77% of survey respondents said the number of students with severe psychological problems had increased on their campuses in the last year, up from 71% who said the same in the 2008-09 school year. The survey's coordinator says the increase did not necessarily mean that students' problems had become more severe in a one-year period -- it was more likely that directors were beginning to acknowledge a continuing rise in severity over the past several years. Anxiety surpassed depression as the top student complaint this year for the first time since the association's inaugural survey, conducted in 2006. About 40% of students came to counselling centres for anxiety, while depression accounted for 38% of the counselling caseload in 2009-10. The Chronicle of Higher Education (free access)