General Well-Being

Karoshi 【過労死】

Karoshi, a Japanese word translated into death by overwork, is a well-known phenomenon in Japanese society. Most victims of karoshi worked long hours to a certain extent of 60 to 70 hours a week. Among others, the root causes are physical pressure, mental stress, burnout that sometimes leads to suicide or karojisatsu 【過労自殺】.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the movement control order (MCO) implementation have brought some pressures and mental stress among employees and students. The employees need to work from home while the students need to attend online classes.

Early this week, my daughter, an undergraduate student at one of the public universities, told me that one of the students in the university passed away due to pressure while the other one was in a coma for the same reason. This morning, the student who was in a coma also passed away. These two incidents were shocking to me, and it is an alarming sign.

Karoshi seems that it does not only affect employees, but it also affects students. The university management should take immediate action to prevent these two incidents from recurring in the future. The students have probably pressure because of the assignment commitments, examinations, the internet connection, family matters, and other personal reasons. Usually, the students take six courses in one semester.

With the volatile and uncertain conditions today, the students have difficulty performing well in their studies. Some lecturers break down the course into many types of assignments as part of formative assessments. For instance, quizzes, tests 1 and 2, individual tasks, group assignments, presentations, and so forth. We can imagine that how much pressure the students have when there are the same patterns for the whole six courses. Perhaps the university should limit the breakdown of the assignments and only fewer assignments for the non-core subjects.

Categories: General Well-Being

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