15 Jan Advancing the Campus Community Perspective: Mental Health Literacy
Mental health literacy (MHL) is defined as “knowledge and beliefs about mental health problems which aid their recognition, management or prevention” (Jorm et al., 1997, p. 182).MHL has several components, including the ability to recognise specific disorders, knowledge of causes, risk factors, and treatment, attitudes that promote recognition and appropriate help-seeking, and first aid skills for supporting others with mental health issues (Jorm, 2012; Jorm et al., 1997). MHL is widely recognised as a foundational element of mental health promotion and of the prevention, early identification, and treatment of mental disorders (Mcluckie et al., 2014; Wei et al., 2018). People who are more well- informed and educated about these issues tend to help those who are experiencing mental health problems more appropriately and effectively (Rossetto et al., 2016). MHL programs for university staff have proven efficacious (Rein et al., 2018). Given the high rates of mental health issues and students’ reluctance to seek help (Brenner et al., 2020), staff must be equipped with training as well as clear policies and procedures to ensure that students are connected to appropriate care. It has been suggested that such programs should be offered regularly in academic settings to ensure mental health awareness and promote positive help-seeking attitudes to the student population (Ashoorian et al., 2019). In this manner, stigma is combated, and student experience is enhanced within an environment that fosters wellbeing.
Gatekeeper Training in Higher Education by Ieva Vas