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Research points to the fact that mindfulness can both increase resilience and reduce stress; so what is it all about and could it play any part in improving student and staff wellbeing?

Research points to the fact that mindfulness can both increase resilience and reduce stress; so what is it all about and could it play any part in improving student and staff wellbeing?

Field, Jenny (2017) Research points to the fact that mindfulness can both increase resilience and reduce stress; so what is it all about and could it play any part in improving student and staff wellbeing? In: SHIFT 2018: Annual Conference of Learning, Teaching & Assessment, Friday 5th January 2018, Greenwich Maritime Campus, Queen Anne Court.

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Abstract

Recent evidence in a HEFCE report (2015) suggests that a record number of students are seeking help due to anxiety and stress. In fact the High Education Policy Institute, HEPI (2016) states that students are less happy and more anxious than the general population, to a greater extent than ever before. This anxiety and stress very often effects their ability to be resilient; this is also important, as Reed (2013) states that resilience is currently cited by employers as one of the most highly valued skills in the workplace. Identifying factors that may build resilience and decrease stress for students at university could help inform the development of prevention and care strategies – rather than offering support only when this has reached individual crisis level. In 2017 Universities UK launched a programme encouraging universities to develop an institutional framework of support.

There is now a growing evidence base, both clinical and non-clinical, around the beneficial effects of mindfulness. This research is taking place in many leading universities, including Stanford; Harvard; Massachusetts; Montash; Oxford and Cambridge, to name just a few. In 2016 the Vice-Chancellor of Buckingham University, Sir Anthony Seldon, led the UK’s 1st Ever Mindfulness in Medicine Conference. This was followed a year later by a 2 day event led by Warwick University, in partnership with the University of Buckingham and Leicester, ‘The Mindfulness in Health and Higher Education Conference’. In fact Oxford University has for many years researched into the efficacy of mindfulness, with a dedicated ‘Oxford Mindfulness Centre’ and 3 years ago began delivering mindfulness to both MPs and their staff in the Houses of Parliament. This in part led to a Report by the Mindfulness All-Party Parliamentary Group ‘Mindful Nation UK’ in 2015 – with recommendations for health, education, workplace and criminal justice system.

This key note aims to look at why chronic stress is bad for us; to explain some of the key aspects of mindfulness and to look at some of the recent rigorous research behind it. It will also consider whether mindfulness might offer some support to both students and staff alike.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: mindfulness; stress; resilience; wellbeing
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1501 Primary Education
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education & Health
Faculty of Education & Health > Department of Primary Education
Last Modified: 31 May 2018 13:17
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/20307

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