Telepressure puts hold on studying

By Mohammed Taha Faridi

Responding to work-related emails and messages when off the clock is stressful for students because it gets in the way of study time.

The term “telepressure” was coined by associate psychology professors Larissa Barber and Alecia Santuzzi, who are conducting research on the effects of bringing work home through electronic means. Telepressure is the pressure put upon people to respond to emails and messages related to work.

Telepressure is a problem because student-workers are spending the time they should be studying on work-related emails and texts and are occupied with work even when not there.

Responding to emails and messages helps develop a good rapport with your colleagues, but it tends to be stressful, according to the research conducted by Barber and Santuzzi.

“People who were reporting higher telepressure were more likely to feel burned out physically, cognitively … it also was associated with poor sleep quality and also self-supported absenteeism for work,” Barber said.

Work that requires frequent communication through electronic messages is overwhelming. A quick text to let a worker know the time and date of a meeting is fine, but a constant flow of work-related messages can get in the way of studying or free time since workers feel obligated to respond.

Senior nursing major Kayla Holcomb said she delt with telepressure when she worked as a caregiver.

“ … My boss knew I was a student but they never really seemed to care,” Holcomb said. “ … It was an on-call type of job. They would be like, ‘We need you here in this city or that city’ … well, I can’t ’cause I have a test. It got annoying.”

I’ve worked in environments where there was a need for frequent communication through texts or emails and where there was seldom communication via electronic messages. In the environment where there’s more communication via electronic messages, students are more focused on work than studies.

Telepressure takes up the time you could spend with your family and friends and can take a toll on your stress level.