There is convincing evidence that persistent sleep disturbance has harmful psychological and physical effects for any individual. Such disturbance is common in the general population but due to a range of factors, University students are at particular risk affecting both their wellbeing and education.

Despite the importance of this topic, it remains under-researched, especially in the UK. A more specific understanding of sleep disturbance, mental health, wellbeing and educational impact in UK University students is required.

The principal and co-investigators will be developing a working team with the aim of producing two external grant applications. In order to do this, a range of activities will be embarked on including grant development workshops, a systematic literature review, assessing appropriate research instruments and conducting pilot research work.

The project is in the early stages. The systematic review of literature will take a rigorous approach to identify and evaluate previous relevant research and identify the precise gaps in the literature relevant to UK University students. This will form the background and rationale for the external grant applications and will lead to a publication in a peer reviewed journal.

The pilot research work will include a small scale online survey of a group of students at the University of Portsmouth and University of Westminster (where one of the co-investigators if based) to gather preliminary data on student experience and to test the feasibility and practicality of the identified methods and instruments with this population.

It is likely the eventual external grant applications will involve a range of research methods and the development and evaluation of online resources for students.

Through a more advanced understanding of sleep disturbance, mental health, wellbeing and educational impact in UK University students, the external grant applications resulting from this project are likely to impact a number of groups. These include University students and their families, University staff (academic and support), Universities themselves and wider society.

Dr Rebecca Stores (PI)
Pilkington, Karen, (Team Member)
Miss Caroline Strevens (Team Member)
Dr Denise Renee Meyer (Team Member)
Dr Darren Van Laar (Team Member)
Ridge, Damien (CoI)

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