THE DEMOGRAPHIC FACTORS INFLUENCING THE PREVALENCE AND MANAGEMENT OF DEPRESSION AND SUICIDAL BEHAVIOURS AMONG UNDERGRADUATES IN RIVERS STATE

THE DEMOGRAPHIC FACTORS INFLUENCING THE PREVALENCE AND MANAGEMENT OF DEPRESSION AND SUICIDAL BEHAVIOURS AMONG UNDERGRADUATES IN RIVERS STATE

Obi Chidiebere Nneka

Department of Educational Psychology, Guidance and Counselling,

Faculty of Education,

Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

divaonyii@gmail.com

Uzoma Chidoka Nnamaka, Ph.D

Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board, Port Harcourt, Nigeria

chidoka1@yahoo.com

ABSTRACT

The study investigates the demographic factors influencing the prevalence and management of depression and suicidal behaviours among undergraduates in Rivers State. Descriptive survey research design was used for the study because the research has wide scope. Seven purposes of study, seven research questions and five hypotheses were formulated to give direction to the search for information. The instrument for data collection was a researcher-constructed questionnaire, which assessed depression, suicidal behaviour and management strategies of depression among undergraduate students. The population of the study comprises all undergraduates in the three government-owned universities in Rivers State namely: University of Port Harcourt, Ignatius Ajuru University of Education and Rivers State University. The proportionate stratified random sampling technique was used for the study with a sample of 450 students drawn from the population of undergraduates in the state. The test-retest method was used for ascertaining the reliability and coefficients of 0.82, 0.91 and 0.76 were obtained for the sections on depression, suicidal behaviour and management strategies respectively. Mean, standard deviation and percentages were used to answer the research questions guiding the study while chi-square and independent samples t-test were used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The result from the study showed low prevalence of depression and suicidal behaviour among undergraduate students, with age having a significant influence, while gender does not have any significant influence. Furthermore, the result showed that there was no significant difference between male and female students on the suggested management strategies for addressing depression among undergraduates. Based on the results, it was recommended that there should be functional counselling units in schools with relevant advocacy campaigns conducted to provide students with knowledge and symptoms of depression so that it can be effectively handled.

Keywords: Demographic Factors, Depression, Suicidal Behaviours, Undergraduates.

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Nneka, O.C & Nnamaka, U.C (2021). The Demographic Factors Influencing the Prevalence and Management of Depression and Suicidal Behaviours among Undergraduates in Rivers State. International Journal of Research in Education and Sustainable Development, 1(10), pp31-47. Available online at: https://www.ijaar.org/articles/ijresd/v1n10/ijresd-v1n10-Oct21-p1107.pdf.

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