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Imposter syndrome is a psychological phenomenon that affects many people, especially students. It is the feeling of not belonging, of being a fraud or an impostor, despite any evidence to the contrary. Students often experience imposter syndrome, especially in their first year at college or university, and it can have a significant impact on their academic performance and mental health.

In this article, we will explore the meaning of the imposter syndrome, why it is common among students, and how to overcome it.

What is Imposter Syndrome?

Imposter syndrome is a term used to describe the feeling of inadequacy and self-doubt that some people experience despite being highly competent and successful in their field. It’s a form of anxiety that arises from the fear of being exposed as fraud or an impostor. People who experience imposter syndrome often doubt their abilities and feel that they do not deserve their achievements. They may also feel like they’re not qualified for their current position or that they do not belong in their academic program.

Why Do Students Experience Imposter Syndrome?

Students are particularly vulnerable to imposter syndrome because they are often in a period of transition, moving from high school to college or university. This transition can be challenging, especially if they find themselves in a competitive environment where they feel the need to prove themselves. Additionally, students may compare themselves to their peers who may seem to be more successful or talented, and this can exacerbate feelings of inadequacy.

Another reason why students experience imposter syndrome is the newcomer feeling, being away from their support system. They may be living on their own for the first time, and they may not have the same level of support and guidance they had in high school. This can make them feel isolated and alone, which can lead to imposter syndrome.

How to Overcome Imposter Syndrome as a Student:

If you’re a student experiencing imposter syndrome, there are several things you can do to overcome it:

  • Recognize that you are not alone: Imposter syndrome is a common experience, and many people feel the same way. Knowing that you are not the only one who feels this way can help you feel less isolated.
  • Talk to someone: It can be helpful to talk to someone you trust about the feeling; this could be a friend, family member, or a counselor. They can help you gain perspective and provide you with support.
  • Focus on your strengths: Make a list of your strengths and achievements. When you feel doubtful, refer to this list to remind yourself of your capability.
  • Don’t compare yourself to others: Remember that everyone’s journey is different, and that we all have our strengths and weaknesses. Comparing yourself to others will only make you feel worse.
  • Take action: If you feel not good enough, take actions to improve your skills or knowledge. This could mean seeking for a mentor, taking a course, or joining a study group.


Imposter syndrome is a common experience among students, but it’s important to recognize that it is not a reflection of your abilities or worth. By taking action to overcome imposter syndrome, you can improve your academic performance and mental health. Remember that it is okay to ask for help, and that you are not alone. With time and effort, you can overcome imposter syndrome and achieve your goals.

Does Imposter syndrome also affect personal relationship with other?

Praise Castle

Graphic by: Olawale Popoola



  1. As a caregiver its important to be vigilant of the symptoms of change in nature when a teenager is transiting into adulthood! At such times a good ear can be helpful,

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yess, that’s very true

      Liked by 1 person

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