Undergraduate Honours Theses
The goal of this research study was to provide undergraduate post-secondary students with a self-care behaviour that: a) was self-help based; b) could become a routine part of their schedules; and c) was effective in lowering their stress responses. One group of participants was asked to rate their stress on a 7-point scale, twice a day, for 10 business days. A second group of participants was also asked to rate their stress following the same instructions however they were also asked to perform a 5-minute mindfulness-based meditation twice a day, immediately following the stress ratings. A 2 (Week 1 vs. Week 2) x2 (Daytime vs. Evening) x2 (Meditation vs. Non-Meditation) mixed ANOVA was used to analyze the data that was grouped into 4 means for each participant in each of the between subject groups: Week 1 Daytime; Week 1 Evening; Week 2 Daytime; and Week 2 Evening. Of the 33 participants who initially enrolled in this study, 20 submitted enough data to be analyzed. A significant main effect of Week was found, sphericity assumed [F(1, 18) = 5.41, p = .03, partial η2 = .23]. No other significant main effects or interactions were found. Overall the study did not succeed in demonstrating that 5 minutes of mindfulness-based meditations a day was effective in reducing undergraduate university students’ reported stress. Reasons for this were discussed.