School-Based Interventions to Enhance the Resilience of Students

Michael Ungar, Patrick Russell, Gerry Connelly

Abstract


A scoping review of programs targeting middle school students suggests that resilience is seldom the result of interventions within schools alone, or any other single system that provides services to students. Instead, resilience is shown to be a multidimensional construct, involving both exposure to risk and access to multiple internal and external resources. Based on a scoping review of outcomes from 36 interventions, we highlight the elements of successful programs with vulnerable students and reasons for why some programs appear to be less effective or have a negative impact. Less successful programs tended to be those that did not include a cultural component or show sensitivity to contextual variations among students like the size of their community, access to other services and supports, or the economic status of the child’s family. The biases of funders, researchers and educators also influence the choice of resilience-promoting intervention made available in a school rather than the specific needs of the targeted student population. We conclude with several recommendations for more effective interventions with students and the implications of our findings to the evaluation of program outcomes.

Full Text: PDF DOI: 10.5539/jedp.v4n1p66

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Journal of Educational and Developmental Psychology   ISSN 1927-0526 (Print)   ISSN 1927-0534 (Online)

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