Signs of Distress

Signs that indicate a student is distressed:

  Problems in Academic Performance in conjunction with other signs of distress.

These include: 

  • Changes in grades or academic performance.
  • Changes in class attendance or turning in assignments.
  • Unusual or disturbing content in writing.
  Social Indicators

These include:

  • Marked change in patterns of interaction (e.g. avoidance of participation, excessive anxiety when called on, domination of discussions).
  • Social withdrawal.
  Emotional Indicators

These include:

  • Depressed or lethargic mood.
  • Increased anxiety.
  • Extreme mood swings.
  • Unusual or exaggerated emotional responses to events.
  Unusual Behavior

These include:

  • Agitation or acting-out behavior that pushes the limits of decorum and that interferes with the educational environment.
  • Drug or alcohol abuse.
  • Hyperactivity and/or rapid speech.
  • Marked change in personal habits.
  • Repeatedly falling asleep in class.

 Signs of a serious crisis

  Signs that may signal a more serious mental health crisis

These include:

  • Destruction of property or other criminal acts
  • Extreme anxiety resulting in panic reactions
  • Inability to communicate clearly orally or in writing (garbled, slurred speech; unconnected, disjointed, or rambling thoughts)
  • Suicidal comments (orally or in writing)
  • Loss of contact with reality
  • Highly disruptive behavior
  • Threats to harm others
  • Stalking behavior

Non-disruptive students of concern

The university has established the Crisis Awareness and Response Emergency (CARE) Team in order to provide a proactive multidisciplinary and collaborative approach to assessing and responding to students who exhibit threatening, concerning, and/or disruptive behaviors. The purpose of the CARE Team is to provide a vehicle for communication across and among divisions and departments of the university regarding student conduct and to serve as the institutional gathering point for information related to students who exhibit threatening, concerning, and/or disruptive behaviors.

To make a C.A.R.E. team report, call 281-283-2273.