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Stress Resilience and Coping Mechanisms of the Regional University Students in the 2nd Wave of COVID-19 Pandemic 

Dzintra Iliško, Jeļena Badjanova, Vitālijs Raščevskis
Daugavpils University, Latvia

Abstract. Stress is a typical reaction to internal or external factors that are disrupting equilibrium in one’s life or daily routine. In this study stress in considered as a multifaceted factor resulting either in good or bad outcomes depending on one’s mindset and context. The context of the study is the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic when University students were forced to continue to pursue a remote learning experience and had to adapt to new learning norms and circumstances. The focus of the study is on how the pandemic and the remote learning have influenced students’ stress resilience and how it correlates with their coping strategies. As for the theoretical framework authors have chosen a biopsychosocial (BPS) model where a challenge or a threat is related to the way we think about situational demands and find coping resources that are available to interact with the stressful situation. Stress resilience in this article is discussed as an effective comping mechanism in order to regain the equilibrium. The aim of the study is to explore the factors causing stress of bachelor level students in one of the regional universities of Latvia and their coping mechanisms with stress during the 2nd wave of pandemics. The design of the study is a complementary use of quantitative and qualitative methodology that allows in-depth exploration of students’ experience during the second wave of pandemic. The methods or instruments: The authors chose students’ diary as a means of reporting events that are causing stress in students’ life as well as a questionnaire with the students who are engaged in diverse programmes during the second wave of the pandemic (n=196 students) and factors determining their stress resilience.

Keywords: stress resilience, coping mechanisms, pandemic, digitalization, higher education

About the authors

Prof. PhD Dzintra Iliško is a professor of Education at the Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences at Daugavpils University, Latvia. She has an experience of academic work as a university teacher, researcher, editor and reviewer of journals and participant of projects in education. She is an expert in psychology and education.

Dr. Jeļena Badjanova is a docent at the Faculty of Education and Management of Daugavpils University, Latvia. She research interests are teacher education, culture and music education, as well as holistic education in primary education. She is the head of the professional bachelor program: “Primary school Teacher.” Currently she is implementing new education program for the primary school teachers witing the competency based framework at the regional university in Latvia.

Dr. Vitālijs Raščevskis is a docent at the Faculty of Social Sciences at Daugavpils University, Latvia. He is a docent and a practicing psychologist. His research interests are consoling and migration issues, ethnic identity issues and saturability. He is the author of number of publication and he is a member of editorial boards of several international

To Be or Not to Be a Great Educator, 2022. Proceedings of ATEE Annual Conference
Riga: University of Latvia Press, 2023. 985 p.
EdL. Daniela
ISBN 978-9934-36-019-0