Fragile Mental Health

The emotional health of incoming freshmen is at its lowest point in at least three decades, a new survey shows, with students reporting that they’re spending more time studying and less time socializing with friends.

The American Freshman Survey, an annual report that is now entering its 50th year, collected responses from about 153,000 full-time, first-year students at 227 four-year public and private institutions in 2014. When asked to rate their emotional health in relation to other people their age, only 50.7 percent of the students reported that their emotional health was “in the highest 10 percent” of people or “above average.” It’s the lowest rate since the survey began measuring self-ratings of emotional health in 1985.


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