Background: Depression is one of the most prevalent mental illnesses among college students worldwide. Using the family triad dataset, this study investigated machine learning (ML) models to predict the risk of depression in college students and identify important family and individual factors. Methods: This study predicted college students at risk of depression and identified significant family and individual factors in 171 family data (171 fathers, mothers, and college students). The prediction accuracy of three ML models, sparse logistic regression (SLR), support vector machine (SVM), and random forest (RF), was compared. Results: The three ML models showed excellent prediction capabilities. The RF model showed the best performance. It revealed five significant factors responsible for depression: self-perceived mental health of college students, neuroticism, fearful-avoidant attachment, family cohesion, and mother's depression. Additionally, the logistic regression model identified five factors responsible for depression: the severity of cancer in the father, the severity of respiratory diseases in the mother, the self-perceived mental health of college students, conscientiousness, and neuroticism. Discussion: These findings demonstrated the ability of ML models to accurately predict the risk of depression and identify family and individual factors related to depression among Korean college students. With recent developments and ML applications, our study can improve intelligent mental healthcare systems to detect early depressive symptoms and increase access to mental health services.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning (Nos. NRF 2022R1A2C2004867 and 2021R1F1A1058613).
Copyright © 2022 Gil, Kim and Min.
- college student
- machine learning
- risk factors