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Cash flow bigger cause of student stress than debt

06 April 2005
Whilst student debt has received a considerable amount of government and media attention, a psychologist has revealed that cash flow is actually a worse cause of student anxiety, depression and stress.

Speaking at the British Psychological Society's annual conference at the University of Manchester on Saturday, Dr Adrian Scott revealed that day-to-day money problems rather than debt were provoking stress in the 268 students he surveyed.

"Often the amount of money students can borrow is not enough for their daily needs, and the resulting financial difficulties may lead to depression, anxiety and stress," said Dr Scott, of the University of Bath.

"Although the overall size of students' debt is important after graduation, at university it is whether or not debt impacts upon their daily existence that really matters."

Dr Scott called for universities to be more pro-active in educating students about financial management and promoting university money management services.

The psychologists' findings follow a five-fold increase in student debt over the last ten years, and a Barclays survey released last summer that revealed that the average student debt in England and Wales had grown to £12,609.

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