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Emotional safety during examinations

Mid-year exams have begun and with crunch time comes emotional upheaval. However, it is manageable and should not deter you from the end-goal of succeeding in your studies while maintaining high mental health standards.

“The exam period is a time when stress and anxiety levels are higher than usual. Stress can be positive and help you stay motivated and focused. However, too much stress can be unhelpful and can make you feel overwhelmed, confused, exhausted and edgy,” says Dr Melissa Barnaschone, Director of Student Counselling and Development at the University of the Free State (UFS).

According to Helpguide.Org: Trusted guide to mental & emotional health, “Mental and emotional health is about being happy, self-confident, self-aware, and resilient. People who are mentally healthy are able to cope with life’s challenges and recover from setbacks. But mental and emotional health requires knowledge, understanding, and effort to maintain. If your mental health isn’t as solid as you’d like it to be, here’s the good news: there are many things you can do to boost your mood, build resilience, and get more enjoyment out of life.”

For further details on topics including: Building Better Mental Health, Emotional Intelligence Toolkit, Benefits of Mindfulness, Improving Emotional Intelligence (EQ), Cultivating Happiness, visit the Help Guide. 

Dr Barnaschone has a few tips on how Kovsies can better approach academic anxiety during the examination period. Here is what she has to say:

News Archive

UFS more accessible for persons with disabilities
2010-04-22

After millions of rands have already been spent on making its buildings more accessible to people with disabilities, the University of the Free State (UFS) is embarking on a new drive to make the Main Campus more user-friendly for its students and staff with disabilities.

Recently the UFS completed a report with recommendations to upgrade more of its buildings in this regard.

The university is already a leader with regard to its services to students with disabilities and is drawing students from all over the country. The Unit for Students with Disabilities (USD) at the UFS offers support to approximately 120 students.

According to Prof. Niel Viljoen, Vice-Rector: Operations, it remains an ongoing process that should constantly be reviewed. Following a prioritised strategic plan, the UFS is upgrading the bathrooms and elevators in its buildings as well as the ramps and parking spaces.

In the new drive a number of future projects have been identified to make the buildings as well as the Main Campus more accessible and user-friendly for persons with disabilities:

Ramps will be added at the entrances to four more buildings. The entrances to the Geology and Geography Buildings will also be made more accessible. An access ramp from the parking area to the pavement will also be added at the CR de Wet Building (housing the Departments of Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy).

To make classrooms on higher levels accessible, the UFS is looking into the possibility of installing elevators in four more buildings. The university is also investigating the possibility of stair lifts in two of its buildings. Existing elevators on campus will also be upgraded.

More allocated parking spaces for persons in wheelchairs will also be provided closer to buildings.

Accessible bathrooms for persons with disabilities will be added in five more buildings on campus.

Media Release
Issued by: Mangaliso Radebe
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2828
Cell: 078 460 3320
E-mail: radebemt@ufs.ac.za  
22 April 2010

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