Thesis

Examination of attitudes on youth suicide among first-year college students

Research on college students’ attitudes towards suicide is very limited. The current study was limited to first year college students, as the research available highlighted that the rates of suicide tended to spike more significantly during the transition period from high school to college. The present study examined the attitudes of first year college students toward suicide based on the eight clinical scales of the Suicide Opinion Questionnaire. The Suicide Opinion Questionnaire (SOQ) is a 100-item survey that was developed to evaluate attitudes toward suicide. There were 70 respondents who took part in the survey, aged from 18 to 20 years old. The two most consistent and therefore reliable scales provided the lowest agreement scores indicating that the respondents tend to disagree with Scale 3. Right to death items and Scale 4. Importance of religion. This means that first year college students who took part in the survey do not think that people have the right to die, that religion can play an important role in suicide, and lack of religiosity can cause higher incidence of suicide. To add more details to the analysis a per item frequencies analysis was run to indicate the statements that received the highest and lowest support among the respondents. An overview of most agreed and disagreed statements of the SOQ-C showed that the students first of all speak of importance of therapy and help to those who had a suicide attempt, because they tend to consider a suicide as “a cry for help.”

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