Exploring the impact of mindfulness on mental wellbeing, stress and resilience of undergraduate social work students

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Abstract

Mindfulness is becoming more popular as emerging research demonstrates its benefits for self-care, by cultivating calmness and decreasing stress or anxiety. This pilot study aimed to measure the impact of a six-week Mindfulness course, modelled on the manualised treatment program developed by Kabat-Zinn, on the mental well-being, stress and resilience of undergraduate social work students in Northern Ireland.
This was a mixed methods study involving two groups: (1) intervention group participants who attended a six week Mindfulness course (April – May 2016) and (2) control group participants. Basic socio-demographic data were collected from all participants and all were invited to complete the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being scale, the Perceived Stress Scale and the Resilience Scale during weeks 1 and 6. Statistical tests were used to compare mean scores from the scales, and qualitative data were manually analysed using thematic content analysis.
Findings indicated significant changes in the scores for well-being, stress and resilience for the intervention group, but not for the control group. Mindfulness may not appeal to all students so should not be a mandatory component of training, but may be offered as one of the wider approaches to self-care for undergraduate social work degree students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-172
JournalSocial Work Education
Volume37
Issue number2
Early online date19 Oct 2017
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 19 Oct 2017

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