Development and usability of a website-based depression literacy intervention for university students in Nottingham
Davies, E. Bethan and Morriss, Richard K. and Glazebrook, Cristina (2014) Development and usability of a website-based depression literacy intervention for university students in Nottingham. In: International Society for Research on Internet Interventions (ISRII) - 7th Scientific Meeting, 23rd-25th October 2014, University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain.
Purpose: A large proportion of university students experience mental health difficulties, with one review reporting a 30% prevalence rate of depression in this population. Depression affects students’ quality of life and academic performance. Mental health literacy (MHL) encompasses an individual’s knowledge towards, and attitudes and beliefs related to, mental health (e.g. symptom recognition, available treatments/help). Students often do not seek professional help for their mental health, and are more likely to seek support from peers. We have conducted four projects relating to MHL in local students – findings include: a third of students (n=276) screened for elevated depressive and/or anxiety symptomology, with 60% reporting they did not seek professional help; interviews found many students did not perceive GPs as a help source and had concerns about available help; and a vignette-based study found students from non-healthcare/psychology degrees reported lower perceived confidence in helping a friend with depression. Students frequently use internet-based technology; delivering interventions online provides a useful mental health promotion strategy in this population. Based on our findings, we have developed a website-based intervention addressing students’ depression literacy. A usability study with the target population can identify the website’s usefulness and allow us to review it prior to an RCT.
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