Prevalence of suicidal ideations among first-year students at the University of the Western Cape
This mini-thesis aims to gauge the extent of occurrences of suicidal ideations among a sample of first-year students at the University of the Western Cape. The study investigates whether differences among those with suicidal ideations exist with respect to gender, race, religious affiliation and faculty for which students are registered. The sample of the current study consisted of 161 students from two first year Psychology classes at the University of the Western Cape. Non-probability convenience sampling was used whereby only those students who attended the two lectures were asked to participate in the current study. Students self-completed a questionnaire which included a brief demographic section and a section with the Beck Scale for Suicide Ideation (BSS). The overall occurrence of suicidal ideations in the chosen sample was 26%. No significant differences among those with suicidal ideations in terms of gender, race, religion or faculty were observed. The results of this study highlight the importance of establishing prevention and intervention programmes on university campuses to create more awareness about suicide and offer more education to students on this topic in general, as well as to specifically offer counselling and support to students suffering from suicidal ideations.