How Can Educational Institutions Support International Students’ Mental Health

International students can benefit vastly from studying abroad. They can learn new cultures, languages, and skills. However, there are some problems that may affect students’ mental health and happiness.

Some of these problems are: not feeling comfortable with the new culture, not speaking the language well, and not meeting the academic standards. These issues can make some students feel stressed, anxious, or depressed. Therefore, schools should help international students deal with these difficulties and support their mental health.

In this EDU Blog, we will talk about how schools can help international students feel better and do well in their studies.

What is a student's mental health?

Mental health means feeling good about yourself and your life, handling stress, working well, and making a difference in your community. More specifically, the World Health Organization (WHO) says that mental health is not just about the lack of mental problems but also having positive things like confidence, coping skills, and social support.

International students need positive mental health to succeed in their studies and lives. But they face many challenges when they study in a different country and culture. Thus, educational institutions should help them by giving them enough support and resources.

This can help them deal with their problems and overcome them. It can also help them reach their academic and personal goals and positively impact their host country and society.

Factors Impacting Students' Mental Health

Studying abroad can be fun and exciting for international students. But it can also be hard and stressful. Because there are some difficulties that can make them feel negatively and affect their mental health status.

1. Language problems

International students may not speak or understand a new language well. This can make them feel angry or lonely at school or with friends.

2. Culture problems

International students may feel culture shock. They may not know or enjoy the new culture. Thus, culture shock can make students feel lost or confused.

3. Expectation problems

International students may want to do very well in their studies and life. But they may not be able to do everything they want. They may also have pressure from their family, friends, or tutors.

4. Home problems

Students may worry about their family or friends at home. They may have trouble in their country. The problem could be about money, politics, or health. They may also feel bad or sorry for not helping them.

5. Health problems

International students may get sick physically or mentally. This can affect their well-being and work performance. They may also have trouble finding good doctors or getting help.

These problems can cause mental health issues like worry, sadness, sleep trouble, and bad thoughts. Mental health issues can make it hard for students to succeed, grow, and enjoy their studies abroad.

How Can Schools Help International Students' Mental Health?

International students may face many difficulties when they study abroad. They may feel stressed, lonely, confused, or unwelcome. However, schools can support them in different ways:

  • Invite them to join orientation programs. These programs can help students learn about the new place, culture, and school. They can also help them meet new people, find mentors, and join support groups. This can make international students feel more comfortable and happy.

  • Provide counseling services that are easy to access, affordable, private, and respectful of different cultures. These services can help them express their feelings, deal with problems, get help from other experts or groups, and call or chat online. Counselors should be good at working with different people and understand their concerns and needs.

  • Make a safe, inclusive campus climate that values and celebrates diversity and multiculturalism. This can include teaching and learning about different cultures and views, promoting intercultural dialogue and exchange, preventing discrimination and harassment, and giving chances for international students to share their stories and opinions.

  • Support them with their academic goals and challenges. We can offer them tutoring, writing help, study skills workshops, feedback sessions, academic advising, and career counseling.

  • Finally, help them understand what they need to do for their courses and assignments, such as language skills, plagiarism rules, citation styles, and cultural differences.

Furthermore, educational institute can help international students have fun and socialize by organizing activities, clubs, sports, volunteering opportunities, cultural events, field trips, and exchanges.

To sum up

Educational institutions should care about the mental health of international students. By implementing the strategies discussed in this EDU Blog, they can create a nurturing environment that fosters the well-being and success of international students.

Do you want to know more about how to help international students’ mental health? Then check out our EDU Blog. You will find helpful information and advice that can improve the lives of international students. Let’s work together to make education more welcoming and supportive.

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