Dr Resti Tito Villarino, an instructor of CTU-Moalboal Campus and National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP) member, spearheaded a Department of Science and Technology (DOST)-NRCP funded study on the effectiveness of an online well-being development program.
The aim was to engage students during the pandemic with an online community and a chance to connect with fellow students and introduce them to the concepts of health and well-being, emphasising mental health.
This 6-month study which started last May 2021, addressed the calling of DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Pena, for the government and the education sectors to go hand in hand to make interventions on the general well-being and mental health of students during this time.
Respondents of the study were 178 students from a private college and state university in Cebu and Bohol.
They split into two groups: control and test groups. The control group did their usual everyday tasks while the test groups were exposed to intervention tools such as questionnaires and guides promoting positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, and accomplishments.
Post-test scores of test groups revealed some improvement in COVID-19 prevention attitudes, frequency of eating nutritious food, number of sleeping hours, and levels of depression, anxiety, and stress.
The study results were packaged into a policy brief entitled, “Student’s Online Health and Well-being during the Pandemic.” Dr Villarino proposed the results to the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Department of Health(DOH) in developing similar initiatives in a broader context and longer study duration.
Co-authors of the study included Maureen Lorence F. Villarino, Maria Concepcion L. Temblor, Nilde T. Chabit, Christopher Asuncion L. Arcay, Grace B. Gimena, Prosper Bernard, Michel Plaisent
Cebu Technological University, Moalboal, Cebu, Philippines, National Research Council of the Philippines, Manila, Philippines University of San Agustin, Iloilo City, Philippines Mater Dei College, Tubigon, Bohol, Philippines Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, QC, Canada
Words by Rosalea Fenina A. Margallo- Moalboal Campus