Help-seeking attitudes : a study of University of KwaZulu-Natal students.
The study examined the help-seeking attitudes and behaviour of students of the University of KwaZulu-Natal. The aim was to explore the frequently encountered problems that students face, their preferred sources of help for those problems and their attitudes towards psychological help. One-hundred-and-fifty undergraduate and post-graduate students from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg campus, participated in the study. The sample was selected by means of non-probability convenient sampling due to the ease of this technique. The instruments for the study consisted of an adapted questionnaire that consisted of three sections. The data collected was quantitative in nature. Data was then captured in the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) and presented in frequency tables. The findings revealed nine significant problems frequently encountered by the students. At the top of the list participants reported that financial problems were the most widespread problem encountered by them. The study also revealed, as expected, that close friends were the preferred sources of help solicited by the students. The study further discovered that students had an intermediate attitude towards professional psychological help. This finding depicts a slight shift from previous studies which reported a trend of negative attitudes among students, which means some students are starting to understand the role and value of professional psychological services. The implications of these findings were drawn and some recommendations for clinical practice and further studies were presented.
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