Research into the potential of short interventions in promoting well-being among adolescents

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Barry, Mark Anthony
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University College Cork
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The present research examines the issue of universal interventions designed to enhance wellbeing among a community-based adolescent population. The first phase saw a cross-sectional survey conducted among Transition Year students in 13 secondary schools in Cork city and county, Republic of Ireland, with a view towards identifying dimensions linked with wellbeing (operationalised as subjective happiness, life satisfaction, and depressive symptoms) and which might prove effective in informing intervention approaches. Arising from this, mindfulness, gratitude, and cognitive-behavioural dimensions emerged as predictors of wellbeing, and short interventions (four sessions/four weeks) informed by each were conducted with participant groups in three secondary schools, one intervention in each school. Results from statistical analysis showed that the mindfulness and cognitive-behavioural interventions facilitated significant reductions in depressive symptoms among active condition participants at post-test, but that these benefits were not sustained over time, while no statistically significant changes were detected on subjective happiness and life satisfaction. The gratitude intervention was found to have had no effect on the three outcome variables. The findings are discussed in the context of theory and past research, while limitations, implications, and possible future directions are also addressed.
Adolescence , Well-being , Cognitive behavioural coaching , Mindfulness , Gratitude
Barry, M. A. 2014. Research into the potential of short interventions in promoting well-being among adolescents. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.
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