A longitudinal study of students' perceptions of using deep breathing meditation to reduce testing stresses

Teach Learn Med. 2007 Summer;19(3):287-92. doi: 10.1080/10401330701366754.


Background: Stress can impact student performance. Yet few medical schools provide students with a consistent opportunity to develop and regularly practice stress reduction techniques to aid them academically.

Description: A curriculum component designed to assist 64 postbaccalaureate minority students in developing and practicing a stress-management technique was implemented on a regular basis from June 2004 to April 2006. Students participated in Deep Breathing Meditation exercises in two classes and completed pre-, post-, and follow-up surveys each academic year.

Evaluation: Students reported having perceptions of decreased test anxiety, nervousness, self-doubt, and concentration loss, using the technique outside of the two classes, and believing it helped them academically and would help them as a physician.

Conclusions: The Deep Breathing Meditation technique was successfully implemented each academic year, and it provided students with a promising solution for meeting challenging academic and professional situations.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Breathing Exercises*
  • Educational Measurement*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Illinois
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Minority Groups
  • Stress, Psychological*
  • Students, Medical / psychology*