Interventions addressing loneliness amongst university students

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In this Papers Podcast, junior doctors Olivia Ellard and Christina Dennison, and Assistant Professor Helena Tuomainen of University of Warwick, discuss their Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) journal paper, ‘Interventions addressing loneliness amongst university students: a systematic review’ There is an overview of the paper, methodology, key findings, and implications for practice.

Discussion points include;

  • Some university students appear more vulnerable to feelings of loneliness, and therefore additional risk of mental health problems
  • Impact of the COVID 19 on loneliness for university students
  • How universities can have the power to tackle loneliness in their student population
  • Advice for university mental health practitioners to assist with prevention and intervention
  • Recommendations for young people if they are feeling lonely
  • Advice for parents or carers, CAMH professionals and policy makers.

In this series, we speak to authors of papers published in one of ACAMH’s three journals. These are The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry (JCPP)The Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) journal; and JCPP Advances. Subscribe to ACAMH mental health podcasts on your preferred streaming platform. Just search for ACAMH on; SoundCloudSpotifyCastBoxDeezerGoogle Podcasts, Podcastaddict, JioSaavn, Listen notesRadio Public, and (not available in the EU). Plus we are on Apple Podcasts visit the link or click on the icon, or scan the QR code.

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Olivia Betty Ellard
Olivia Ellard

I live and work in London as a Junior doctor in the NHS. I studied medicine at the University of Warwick, graduating in 2022. Prior to this I completed a masters degree in Pharmacy.

My passions lie in mental health, in particular children’s and young peoples mental health. I enjoy keeping up to date with the latest research in the field of psychiatry, and I am always interested in taking part in new research opportunities.

Christina Dennison
Christina Dennison

I’m currently a foundation doctor working at Cumberland Infirmary on a busy gastroenterology ward. I have a keen interest in psychology and had the opportunity to study psychology at Durham University for 3 years. Following this, I spent a short time working in banking. I was then able to study medicine for 4 years at Warwick University before graduating in July 2022. My interests include Psychiatry and Emergency Medicine.

Assistant Professor Helena Tuomainen
Assistant Professor Helena Tuomainen

I am interested in young people and their mental wellbeing in high and low/middle income countries, and coproduced research. I have an interest in schools as settings for promoting mental wellbeing, identifying problems and supporting young people. I am also interested in the role of parents and primary care in caring for young people with mental health problems and supporting them access care, especially during late adolescence/early adulthood. I am involved in school-based mental health research and the development of an assessment platform, currently enabling schools to undertake yearly wellbeing measurements, but with scope for broader research use. I am developing research proposals linked to autism, and eating disorders, and an intervention associated with commensality (eating together) to support student mental wellbeing. I co-lead the Public Mental Health course at Warwick Medical School. Previously, I was the scientific research manager on the EU-funded MILESTONE project (2014 to 2019), with nine interlinked work packages focusing on the transition of young people from child to adult mental health services. I coordinated the MILESTONE study, an 8-country cohort study with a nested cluster randomised controlled trial testing the effectiveness of ‘managed transition’. Under my leadership, the MILESTONE team was highly commended for Public Engagement activities (University of Warwick awards, 2018) and won the MQ/NIHR award for Service User involvement in research.

Other resources

  • Featured paper ‘Review: Interventions addressing loneliness amongst university students: a systematic review’, (2022). Olivia Betty EllardChristina DennisonHelena Tuomainen

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