MIT: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
For Advisors
The First Year at MIT

Advising Right Now: Recognizing Signs of Stress

Early intervention gets positive results. Help your students help themselves by alerting them to resources. TAs, faculty, and tutors are all available to help. If you have a student who appears depressed or overwhelmed, now is the time to refer him or her. A first warning that a student may be experiencing stress is a Fifth Week Flag in one or more subjects.

Identifying Stress Symptoms

MIT Medical has a printable brochure called When You're Worried About a Student, which includes a list of symptoms of stress. These include:

Academic Problems

The student's TAs and/or instructors, subject review sessions, departmental tutoring, the Tutorial Services Room (TSR), and the staff in Undergraduate Advising and Academic Programming office are all great resources for students seeking to improve their academic performance.

If you want to be in direct contact with your advisee's teachers or TAs, please see the list of Freshman Lecturers.

Time Management and Study Skills

For students who are still struggling with time management and/or poor study habits, the Center for Academic Excellence (ACADEX) site offers assistance with assessment of time and good advice on balancing academics, healthy activities, and social life.

Personal Problems or Extenuating Circumstances

Sometimes students are unable to focus on schoolwork because of personal mental health issues like depression, illness, serious interpersonal problems (roommates, new or failing romances), or family crisis (death, divorce, illness).