Mindfulness and the college transition: The efficacy of a mindfulness-based stress reduction intervention in fostering adjustment among first-year students
Linda R. Tennison, Psychology
Within recent years, there has been a marked proliferation in the interest in and relevant literature pertaining to the practice of mindfulness. This study sought to augment this knowledge base through an examination of the efficacy of a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) intervention in fostering adjustment among first-year college students. Fifty-six (N=56) first-year participants from two Midwestern liberal arts institutions partook in the study. Experimental participants (n=29) completed an eight-week MBSR intervention conducted by a qualified instructor. Control participants (n=27) did not receive mindfulness instruction. Adjustment indices were gathered using the Student Adaptation to College Questionnaire (SACQ), providing individual scores on one primary full scale and four subscales. Experimental participants further completed a Five Factor Model (FFM) mindfulness questionnaire consisting of five facets during both pre- and post-intervention assessment periods. Statistical analyses indicated significant gender differences among the SACQ Full Scale and Social Adjustment and Attachment subscales, with males scoring higher. Additionally, experimental participants scored higher on the Personal-Emotional Adjustment subscale relative to the control condition. Apart from statistical significance, however, the experimental condition scored higher relative to the control on all five SACQ scales. Further analyses indicated that post-intervention scores on the Nonreactivity, Observing/Attending, and Describing/Labeling facets were significantly higher among experimental participants when compared to pre-intervention assessments. This study suggests that mindfulness, as part of a MBSR intervention, serves as a beneficial practice in contributing to first-year student adjustment and acclimation to the college environment.
Ramler, Taylor R., "Mindfulness and the college transition: The efficacy of a mindfulness-based stress reduction intervention in fostering adjustment among first-year students" (2014). Celebrating Scholarship & Creativity Day. 27.