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University dropouts triggered by mental health

19th March 2020
Posted by Aston Avery

Drop-out rates amongst university students in the UK have risen consistently over the last five years and new research commissioned by MyUniChoices suggests that mental health is the single ‘biggest factor’ for dropping out of university with almost a third of students (31 per cent) saying that mental health was a factor for them deciding to leave university.

The research also shows that over a third of students (35 per cent) who dropped out suffered with mental health issues after leaving education. Almost half (49 per cent) say they felt like a ‘failure’, a further 45 per cent say their long term career was harmed by dropping out and 49% regretted their decision to leave.

Amongst the overwhelming majority (85 per cent) of students who experienced negative impacts after dropping out, almost two thirds (63 per cent) said they had low self-esteem and 58 per cent suffered depression. One in five also suffered from alcohol/drug misuse, 18 per cent self-harmed and 12 per cent suffered from an eating disorder.

Aston spoke to Dr Charles Johnson, chief psychometrics advisor at My Uni Choices to discuss the research in further detail.