a1 Deakin University
a2 University of Melbourne
During the transition from secondary school to university many students experience stress associated with academic concerns and difficulties in coping with new academic and social demands. The present study investigated first year university students' level of academic stress across first semester and evaluated the coping strategies employed by students to deal with academic concerns. Students' level of academic stress was greater at the beginning of semester, during the transition period than at the end of semester, prior to the examination period. A positive relationship between academic stress and non-productive coping was also revealed. It was concluded that effective and timely assistance needs to be provided to students prior to, or during the transition period to make the commencement of university a positive experience.