Date of Award


Degree Name

Educational Leadership


College of Education and Professional Development

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Dennis P. Prisk, Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Paul Leary

Third Advisor

Dr. Lynne Welch

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Steven Banks


The purpose of this study was to determine if there is a difference in the perceived stress levels and the coping styles of junior and senior students in nursing and social work programs. The study used a descriptive comparative approach and was non[1]experimental. Research questions were developed to guide this research. The population for this research included all junior and senior nursing and social work students preparing for or in clinical courses at a selected university. The sample consisted of 89 nursing students and 33 social work students. Data was obtained through self-reported survey procedures. The researcher visited appropriate classrooms identified by faculty. Participants were given a packet with three instruments. The first instrument was a demographic tool developed by the researcher. Perceived stress levels were measured by Cohen's Perceived Stress Scale. Coping styles were identified by the Moos Coping Responses Inventory. Responses indicated that social work students have significantly higher perceived stress levels than nursing students. Nursing students identified more reliance on approach coping responses, while social work students identified more reliance on avoidance coping responses. No significant differences were identified between the two groups based on age, gender, marital status, employment status or class.


Stress (Psychology) -- Testing

Nursing students -- Life skills assessment

Students -- Life skills assessment

Coping Responses Inventory

Perception -- Testing