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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

Study shows that even cheating monkeys alter their behaviour to avoid detection and punishment
2013-03-12

 

Dr Le Roux sharing a moment with the geladas (Theropithecus gelada).
Photo: Supplied
11 March 2013

A recent article headed by Dr Aliza le Roux from the University of the Free State Qwaqwa Campus’ Department of Zoology and Entomology, asserts that cheating and deception is not only a human phenomenon - it is also found in non-human animals.

“Our specific study investigated cheating and punishment in geladas. While human beings are known to deceive one another, and punish cheaters that get caught, it is actually very rare to find proof of this kind of behaviour in non-human animals,” said Dr Le Roux.

“We don't know if this is because humans are uniquely deceitful, or if it is just that animals deal with cheating differently. Our study was therefore the first to demonstrate that gelada males and females try to deceive their partners when they are cheating on them. This means they try to hide their unfaithful behaviour.” This is therefore the first investigation to document tactical deception in primates living in a natural environment.

“We also showed that the cuckolded males then punish the cheaters, but could not determine if the punishment actually caused cheaters to stop cheating,” said Dr Le Roux.

This on-going and long-term study continues to observe the population of wild geladas in the Simien Mountains National Park in Ethiopia. The study investigates primate hormones, cognition, genetics, social behaviour and conservation, and is done in collaboration with the Universities of Michigan and Pennsylvania.

The full version of the article can be accessed on (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/journal/v4/n2/full/ncomms2468.html).


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