Mental Health

Mental Health Support

Mental health problems are as common among students as they are in the general population. Everybody is susceptible. If you feel persistently unhappy, you’re struggling to cope, or you’re finding it difficult to manage all aspects of your life whilst studying full time, don’t keep quiet. There is always someone that you can talk to at the University if things get too much. Tell someone how you feel, whether it’s a friend, a counsellor at the University or a doctor – talking to someone is the first step to feeling better.

Think a peer or loved one might be struggling with their mental health? Check out The Mix or the Mental Health Foundation for their tips on supporting others.

We know that money can cause real worry as a student.  For advice on financing your studies and budgeting, head over to the AUSA website.

Visit the Key Contacts page to find out your options for support with your mental health concerns.


Managing Exam Stress

Everyone gets stressed during exam time but it’s important to not let it get out of control. A little bit of stress can sometimes be a good thing – but exams can make stress levels get out of control, which can stop you performing at your best. People deal with stress in a variety of different ways. It’s important to find the approach that works best for you but here are some tips for reducing stress and the services which are there to support you if it all gets too much.

Make use of the study and relaxation spaces on campus during exams.  Special areas of ASV and Hillhead will be opened up to students during the exam period.

Take regular exercise – We’ve got world-class sports facilities at the Aberdeen Sports village that all of our students can take advantage of.

Manage your time well – The Student Learning Service runs workshops throughout the term on time management and other useful academic skills.

Avoid suffering in silence – There is always someone you can talk to at the university, whether that’s the Student Advice and Support Office, the University Counselling office, the Chaplaincy, a Student Resident Assistant or the student volunteers at Nightline Listening and Information Service.

Try being mindful.

Look out for events organised by AUSA and the Student Resident Assistants over the exam period. There are often specialist drop-in events organised such as puppy therapy clinics and free massages.

Check out the Learner’s Toolkit to find out about technological tools like MindManager, GoConqr, and Evernote, which may be able to help you with revision.

Take time to relax – The NHS can also help with information and advice to help students deal with exam stress. Relaxed breathing and deep muscle relaxation are two methods that are proven to reduce stress levels.

More information:



Video courtesy of Stanford Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning

Resilience is the ability to bounce back when you encounter set-backs or negative experiences. Your resilience can be weakened if you feel you are constantly being knocked and students can feel like this when they move to university, suddenly finding themselves in a completely new environment.
On the bright side, it is entirely possible to build up your resilience and find that you come out of a difficult experiences as a stronger person.

Head over to The Resilience Project by Stanford University for videos of people telling their real life stories of springing back after perceived failures and set-backs.

5 ways to build your mental resilience.

Articles on dealing with life after hardships and looking after yourself.



Loneliness can (and probably will) affect us all at some point in our lives and it is suggested that we are particularly vulnerable during periods of change when our social relationships are shifting.

The University provides various opportunities to meet new people so it may help to head over to the AUSA website or to our events calendar to see if something takes your fancy. If you are living in halls, you also have the option of popping over to one of the activities organised by the Student Resident Assistants.

However, sometimes it can be hard to see a way out of the feeling of loneliness. Mind offers some advice on coping with loneliness.

And you always have the option of talking to someone from the University’s Student Advice and Support Office or AUSA Advice.



According to the NHS, “Self-harm is when somebody intentionally damages or injures their body. It’s usually a way of coping with or expressing overwhelming emotional distress.
Sometimes when people self-harm, they feel on some level that they intend to die. Over half of people who die by suicide have a history of self-harm.
However, the intention is more often to punish themselves, express their distress or relieve unbearable tension. Sometimes the reason is a mixture of both.
Self-harm can also be a cry for help.”
For more information and advice on the support available, follow the links below: