Under pressure: A systematic review of stress and its impact among graduate students

Seongkyung Cho, Christopher S. Hayter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Despite increasing interest related to the role of graduate students in economic and social development, science policy scholars have overlooked the role of stress and its broader impact on the conduct of science. To motivate future empirical research, this study systematically reviews the literature on antecedents and the impact of stress among graduate students, examining thirty-four journal articles published from 2000 to 2018. We find that not only do multiple definitions of stress exist, but also that scholars have neglected broader theoretical implications and comparative dimensions of the phenomenon. While this outcome can be explained partially by the paucity of different national and disciplinary perspectives, these factors nonetheless hinder the design and implementation of effective interventions that can help graduate students reduce and manage stress levels and thus improve the conduct of science. We introduce a conceptual model of our findings and discuss implications for future research and policy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)758-771
Number of pages14
JournalScience and Public Policy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020


  • consequences of stress
  • graduate students
  • stress
  • stressors
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Public Administration
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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