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Stress and Anxiety in Academics

Updated: Jan 18, 2022

School life can be described as a double-edged sword. As much as it fosters skills such as critical thinking and work ethics in students, climbing the educational ladder can prove to have depleting effects on an individual's mental health. If not adequately addressed, acute stress can transform into a larger issue and thereby show detrimental signs in a student’s academic performance. As certain academic pressures or expectations are put on students, they start being included into the at-risk population for long-term stress and anxiety.

Some of the sources of concerns that contribute to chronic stress are an impaired student-teacher relationship, unrealistic pressures imposed on a student, and an imbalance in school and free time. As a result, many students find themselves in a vulnerable position because they feel overworked and many times disinterested in studying. A survey showed that 1,053 post-secondary students have faced the adverse effects of anxiety. The implications of this in the classroom include difficulty in retaining information and decreased confidence in their ability to perform on tests. In some individuals, this can impact their self-esteem and discourage them from taking up their interests and engrain a sense of inferiority complex within them of not being able to achieve their goals.

You can address stress and anxiety by practicing self-care. By doing so, you can develop a fresh outlook and find yourself in a much better mental frame. You will consequently be more optimistic in your studies. Another impactful strategy is to engage yourself in meaningful conversations with your teacher and be honest about any academic issues you might be facing. Through this, the teacher could provide you with some useful insight about any upcoming evaluation which might help ease the nerves and give a lot of confidence in your academic performances. Last but not least, if you suspect that you are facing severe psychological distress, consulting a medical professional outside of school or talking to a mental health counselor about your situation may be the appropriate step to take.


  1. Impact of anxiety and depression on student academic progress. IBCCES. (2020, April 17). Retrieved December 17, 2021, from

  2. Lisnyj, K. T., Russell, R., & Papadopoulos, A. (n.d.). Risk and protective factors for anxiety impacting academic performance in post-secondary students. Canadian Journal of Higher Education. Retrieved December 17, 2021, from

  3. Reddy, K. J., Menon, K. R., & Thattil, A. (2018, March 25). Academic stress and its sources among university students. Biomedical and Pharmacology Journal. Retrieved December 17, 2021, from

  4. 12 tips to combat performance anxiety in school. The Scholarship System. (2019, June 23). Retrieved December 17, 2021, from

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