Anxiety & Depression in Ph.D. Researchers Worsening – Study


Mental health problems are common among all the strata of society. Mental health problems affect a student’s academic performance, workplace dissatisfaction, and physical fitness.

Graduates go through stress, anxiety, sleep difficulties and depression. Signs of depression include feeling low, losing motivation, over engagement in tasks, disinterested in studies, sleep problems, irregularity in eating habits.

According to Nature’s biennial Ph.D. survey, an empty room was provided for observing ‘crying time’ to the graduate students and got an overwhelming response. 29% of 5700 respondents mentioned their major concern was mental health and almost half of them seek psychiatrists for overcoming their anxiety and depression because of Ph.D. research.

The last survey of 6300 graduate students from around the world says
71% of students are satisfied with their research work and 36% of students experienced anxiety and depression in their Ph.D. studies.

According to the survey of 50,000 graduate students in the UK, 86% of the students faced anxiety during the time of their Ph.D., more than an average percentage. Things seem to be worsening. Students also listed bullying and discrimination as the reasons for depression. For the career building of Ph.D. researchers, their success is measured by the number of publications, contributions to journals and conferences, citation and funding. Most students choose Ph.D. as freedom and autonomy to explore new and interesting dimensions to focus on. Some students also do not feel comfortable to open in front of them because of the fear of being judged. The ill education system is making students depressed.

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