Effects of Psychological Distress on Academic Achievement in Brunei Student Teachers: Identification Challenges and Counseling Implications

Lawrence Mundia


Students with psychological and mental health problems are often accorded a low status and priority compared to peers with other disabilities. Recent research indicated that a female Brunei student teacher prematurely left her training program due to unaddressed mental health problems. The present study used a mixed methods approach. The random sample consisted of 85 trainee teachers (59 females) out of whom 6 at-risk and vulnerable students (2 males and 4 females) with extreme scores on the psychometric assessments and depressed scores on the academic evaluations were included in the case study. Anxiety was found operating in combination with either extroversion or introversion. While mild extroversion, introversion, and anxiety were not necessarily harmful, excessive amounts of each of these traits could undermine a student’s educational and social functioning. Recommendations included encouraging students to undergo voluntary testing, self-referred counseling, and mounting an active mental health promotion campaign and pastoral care program.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5539/hes.v1n1p51

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Higher Education Studies  ISSN 1925-4741 (Print)   ISSN 1925-475X (Online)

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