Details
Study title
Swiss Youth Mental Health Literacy and Stigma Survey (SYMHLSS)
Ref study 13848
Study language English
Contributing institutions
Authors
Keywords
  • Stigma
  • Youth
  • mental health literacy
  • population mental health
Disciplines
  • Other: Sozialepidemiologie
Period
October 2017 - June 2018
Geographical space
German-speaking part of Switzerland
Country
  • Switzerland
Abstract
The Swiss Youth Mental Health Literacy and Stigma Survey (SYMHLSS) aimed to study mental health literacy and stigma towards mentally ill people in a representative youth sample. The survey has been adapted from the Australian National Survey of Youth Mental Health Literacy and Stigma. As in the Australian survey, vignettes describing a person with a mental disorder were the core element to which most subsequent survey questions referred. Five vignettes were used in the online-based Swiss survey: 1) depression; 2) alcohol abuse; 3) depression and alcohol abuse combined; 4) schizophrenia, and 5) social anxiety disorder. A representative school-based sample of roughly 5000 students at the upper secondary educational level (voccational schools, high schools) filled out the online questionnaire.
Results
Methods (description)
Target population: Pupils on the upper secondary education level in German-speaking parts of Switzerland (=ISCED3).

Sampling design: A two-stage sampling design was used. The first-stage sampling units consisted of individual schools. The two academic paths that can be followed after concluding mandatory schooling – general education (strata I) or vocational school (strata II) – were represented proportionally. The second-stage sampling units were classes within the randomly-selected schools. All students of the selected classes were asked to participate.

Data collection: Research staff travelled to participating schools, introduced the survey to students and answered any questions that arose before the survey started. Subsequently, students filled out the online questionnaire during the remaining school lesson (e.g., on their smartphone, tablets, laptops, etc.). Participants were required to provide informed consent before starting with the questionnaire (no consent from parents was needed). Vignettes describing a person with a mental disorder were the core element to which most subsequent survey questions referred. Five vignettes were used: 1) depression; 2) alcohol abuse; 3) depression and alcohol abuse combined; 4) schizophrenia, and 5) social anxiety disorder.

Participation rate: Altogether, 4,983 students of 314 classes of 105 schools participated (response rate among those who were present on the day of data collection = 99.4%).
Methods (instruments)
  • Standardised interviews - by mail
Replicated study Yes
Source of the replicated study Australian National Survey of Youth Mental Health Literacy.
The CATI interview questionnaire is from the Australian National Survey of Youth Mental Health Literacy and Stigma carried out in 2011. Details of the methodology can be found in the following publication: Reavley NJ, Jorm AF. Young people's recognition of mental disorders and beliefs about treatment and outcome: findings from an Australian national survey. Aust N Z J Psychiatry 2011;45(10):890- 898. doi: 10.3109/00048674.2011.614215.
Publications
  • Glisenti, L.. 2019. Stigmatisierende Einstellungen von Jugendlichen und jungen Erwachsenen gegenüber Personen mit einer Alkoholmissbrauchs- oder anderen psychischen Störung. Masterarbeit: Universität Zürich.
  • Dey, Michelle; Marti, Laurent; Jorm, Anthony F.. 2019. The Swiss Youth Mental Health Literacy and Stigma Survey: Study methodology, survey questions/vignettes, and lessons learned. In The European Journal of Psychiatry, 33(2), 72-82. Online: 10.1016/j.ejpsy.2018.12.001
  • Schnyder, M.. 2019. Einflussfaktoren der psychischen Gesundheitskompetenz bei Jugendlichen und jungen Erwachsenen in der Deutschschweiz bezüglich Alkoholmissbrauch. Masterarbeit: Universität Zürich.
  • Dey, Michelle; Marti, Laurent; Venzin, Vigeli. 2018. Schweizer Befragung von Jugendlichen / jungen Erwachsenen zur psychischen Gesundheitskompetenz und Stigma. Erste Resultate zuhanden der an der Studie beteiligten Schulen - Langversion. ISGF Bericht Nr. 390a. Online: 10.5167/uzh-153031
  • Dey, Michelle; Paz Castro, Raquel; Jorm, Anthony F.; Marti, Laurent; Schaub, Michael P.; Mackinnon, A.. Stigmatizing attitudes of Swiss youth towards peers with mental disorders. PLOS one. Accepted 2020.
Unpublished documents
Financed by
Ethical approval Yes
Study type
Data availability
2025-06-12
Source (Updates) Web
Date created 01.07.2020
Date modified 01.07.2020
Start - End date 01.10.2017 - 30.06.2018