WELLNESS AMONG STUDENTS IN HIGHER EDUCATION
 
Heiman, T., The Open University, Israel
 
The holistic wellness model incorporate multiple dimensions based on emotional, social and physical dimensions. Reviews of research studies pointed out that variables such as life purpose, optimism, and sense of coherence were positively related to perceived wellness among college students (Adams, et al., 2000); while coherence was negatively associated with psychological distress and stress (Kaiser, et al., 1996). Studies described a strong relation between support, adjustment to college and social relationships, while excessive stress reduces work effectiveness, and might contribute to negative results in long-term consequences. Researchers have found that deficiencies in academic skills may impede social adjustment and influence on the individual's self-perception (Stumme, et al., 1983). In the present study we attempted to clarify the psychological well-being of higher education students. Data were collected from 380 students regarding emotional variables (stress, sense of coherence), social variables (social support) and cognitive variables (academic achievements: average grade points and number of courses). We examine the relationships between these variables and whether the students who identified themselves as with learning deficiencies exhibit different perception of wellness. The multivariate results indicated that students who reported on a lower stress, had a higher sense of coherence, a higher social support and experienced academic success felt more positive about their well-being. Differences regarding age, gender and learning deficits will be presented. Practical implications will be discussed with respect to higher education institutes in order to help the students who need emotional, social or academic support.