Associations with wellbeing in college students – Summary

We evaluated students at a large, secular, Southeastern university for positive and negative influences of well-being, their ability to recognize advice from an individual source, its perceived benefit to contributing to well-being, and how they would respond to this advice.  We surveyed secular college students at the University of Georgia, Athens, GA. Questions were developed to assess the positive and negative influences on well-being. We chose one source to provide advice for improved well-being. We measured the students’ recognition of the source and response to the advice.  There were 105 responses to the survey. General well-being was noted most commonly to be improved by: good health (72%), a close relationship with family (72%), friends (72%) or God (57%), or satisfaction with professional career goals (53%). Detracting from general well-being were: lack of vigor, energy, optimal health (64%), poor self-image (64%), or stress from university course work (64%). Students could generally identify wise statements from an undisclosed source as able to improve general well-being. When informed the advice statements were paraphrased from the Bible and asked what their response was to seek further advice from the Bible to improve lifestyle/well-being (57%), maintain their current lifestyle and wisdom/knowledge sources (44%), or not use the Biblical advice (16%).  College students most commonly identify health, close relationships with family, friends and God, as well as satisfaction with career goals, as positive sources of well-being. Further, about half are willing to pursue more knowledge to increase well-being.