EXPLORING THE IMPACT OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC ON ACADEMIC STRESS: A CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY OF JUNIOR COLLEGE STUDENTS IN WEST BENGAL
Abstract: The objective of the current research is to investigate potential disparities in academic stress levels among junior college students during the COVID-19 era, specifically in relation to gender (male and female), habitat (urban and rural), and topic stream (science, commerce, and humanities). The study used a survey research methodology. This research is a cross-sectional investigation undertaken on junior college students affiliated with the West Bengal Council of Higher Secondary Education, namely from the south 24 Pargana area in West Bengal. A total of 600 students from a junior college were selected using a stratified random sample technique. The data gathering in this research included a standardised questionnaire. Data analysis included the use of statistical measures such as the mean, standard deviation, t-test, and F-test. The findings of this research indicate that male junior college students experience greater levels of academic stress compared to their female counterparts. The level of academic stress experienced by junior college students residing in urban areas is comparatively greater in comparison to their counterparts in rural areas. The level of academic stress experienced by junior college students is shown to be greater in the scientific subject as compared to the humanities and commerce disciplines.