J Med Assoc Thai 2011; 94 (12):81

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Correlation between Stressors and Academic Performance in Second Year Medical Students
Nuallaong W Mail

Objective: The present study aimed to find which type of stressors correlating to academic performance in second year medical students. One-hundred and eighty three second year medical students of Thammasat University participated in a three-week cross-sectional study. The self-report questionnaire consisted of Thai stress test, stress factors and examination grades referring academic performance were applied in the present study.
Results: Females felt stress more than males in severe, high, and medium level of stress. There was no low level of stress and no correlation between stress level and the entrance programs. Academic performance found relating to 1) fear of doing a mistake, 2) feeling of competition or comparison, 3) unilateral headache, 4) worrying, and 5) poor concentration. Students with poor concentration had significantly decreasing grade in the second year (p < 0.01). Interestingly, worrying, feeling of competition or comparison, and fear of doing a mistake correlated to increasing grade in some terms (p < 0.05). Specifically to poor concentration, there were medium linear association with fatigue, poor memory, feeling confused, feeling sad, feeling angry or irritable, changing appetite, and headache from stress (p < 0.01).
Conclusion: Poor concentration was the only stressor significantly correlated with poorer academic performance. Poor concentration also correlated with physical, cognitive, and financial problems. The recommendation is to keep watching those issues in order to early detect problem about academic performance.

Keywords: Stress, Medical student, Academic performance, Grade

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