Colleges turn to technology for counseling outreach
- Inside Higher Ed profiles the growth of technology in campus mental health and counseling sectors allowing student contact through online chat and mobile app platforms, which in the last two years, has grown by more than 9%.
- As demand increases and more students grow comfortable with seeking mental health support, observers say technology is an ideal way to begin the process of outreach and determining appropriate treatment or guidance for students.
- Colorado State University has implemented a search engine platform which allows students to look up information about mental, physical health issues and to connect with campus resources for their specific needs.
Mental health outreach is no longer a personalized service for individual students to receive support, but rather, a matter of public safety and public relations precaution for colleges and universities. With the growing reality that unchecked mental health issues have been linked to a number of campus shootings, and the resulting economic factors that can reduce enrollment and campus morale as a result, colleges must be proactive about developing and promoting outreach in psychological and physiological spaces.
While there is concern about the security of transferring personal information over a real-time chat application, IT executives and mental health officials can work together to identify the best software and best practices in making these applications workable for campuses and students.
- Inside Higher Ed A virtual counselor