AWARE Network

Recognizing Student Distress

Some common signals of emotional or psychological distress include:

  • A rapid or marked change in participation or performance in class,
  • Unusual or marked emotional response to events,
  • Mention of suicide or homicide in the content of coursework,
  • Significant change in self-care--personal hygiene, weight loss or gain, sleeping in class,
  • Unusual or inappropriate behavior or talk that concerns other students or interferes with the educational environment.

Counseling and Psychological Services offers resources for working with students in distress

Signs that the student may be experiencing a mental health emergency:

  • Direct suicidal or homicidal statements
  • Confused, repetitive, or highly irrational speech
  • Extreme anxiety; panic
  • Aggressive or threatening speech and behavior
  • Inability to communicate

In these extreme instances, immediately walk the student to Counseling and Psychological Services (3rd floor; Washington Building), Health and Wellness Services (1st floor; Washington Building) or call 911 for assistance.