Adaptation to stress in psychology graduate students

Clara Simães*, Alexandra Costa, Catarina Morais, A. Rui Gomes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This study analyzed stress adaptation in university students, considering the role of cognitive appraisal in the relationship between stress and burnout during the testing season. A total of 187 students from a university in the northern region of Portugal participated in the study. In the total sample, 154 were female (82.4%) and 32 males (17.1%), aged between 17 and 41 years old (M = 20.72; SD = 3.28). The evaluation protocol included a Sociodemographic Questionnaire, the Stress Questionnaire for Students, the Primary and Secondary Cognitive Appraisal Scale, and the Shirom-Melamed Burnout Measure. The results showed that 55.6% of the students perceived high-stress levels, mainly derived from academic evaluation and work overload. Cognitive appraisal mediated the relationship between the overall level of students’ academic stress and the experience of burnout, mostly regarding physical fatigue and cognitive weariness. These findings reinforce the importance of considering the role of cognitive appraisal processes in understanding the dynamics of stress adaptation among university students. To promote healthy educational environments, we must attend to these effects regarding occupational safety and hygiene interventions within the academic context.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationStudies in systems, decision and control
EditorsPedro M. Arezes, J. Santos Baptista, Rui B. Melo, Jacqueline Castelo Branco, Paula Carneiro, Ana Colim, Nélson Costa, Susana Costa, J. Duarte, J. C. Guedes, Gonçalo Perestrelo
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783031125478
ISBN (Print)9783031125461
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameStudies in Systems, Decision and Control
ISSN (Print)2198-4182
ISSN (Electronic)2198-4190


  • Cognitive appraisal
  • Burnout
  • University students
  • Academic stress


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