Adolescent School Failure Predicts Later Depression Among Girls

Department of Pediatrics, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA.
Journal of Adolescent Health (Impact Factor: 3.61). 08/2008; 43(2):180-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2008.01.023
Source: PubMed


Past research has found that social, academic, and behavioral problems are linked with depression during childhood and adolescence. The present study tests a longitudinal cascade model of adolescent problems predicting depression into adulthood, while additionally testing for gender differences.
Using prospective longitudinal analysis with a sample of 808 youth followed from age 10 to 21, we tested whether social problems, school failure, and delinquency in adolescence increased risk for a major depressive episode in emerging adulthood. Structural equation modeling was used to test for gender differences.
Both early conduct problems and adolescent school failures predisposed girls to depression in young adulthood. Among the boys, none of the problems conferred risk for depression.
This study highlights the mutual interplay between school failure and psychological functioning. It is suggested that school adaptation in adolescence be considered a mental health issue.

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    • "In our view, it seems unlikely that these secondary modules could account for the present cohort effects, given the vastly greater intensity and duration of primary MTFC interventions. Still, the problems targeted by these modules can have negative developmental consequences (e.g., arrest, unwanted pregnancy, school drop-out, child welfare involvement as a young parent) that in turn worsen depression and suicide risk (e.g., Bridge et al., 2006; Leve, Kerr, Harold, 2013; McCarty et al., 2008; Moffitt and E-Risk Study Team, 2002). Thus, future research should further consider whether changes in substance abuse, sexual risk taking, and associated life course processes targeted by these modules mediate the MTFC ϫ Cohort interaction effects on suicidal ideation and depressive symptoms that were noted here. "
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    • "at risk of developing internalizing symptoms compared with boys . One study found that low academic achievement at ages 9 and 10 pre - dicted school failure experiences ( i . e . , suspensions , expulsions , not graduat - ing on time ) in adolescence and the likelihood of a major depressive episode in young adulthood for girls , but not for boys ( McCarty et al . , 2008 ) . Compared with boys , girls tend to underestimate their academic competence ( Cole , Martin , Peeke , Seroczynski , & Fier , 1999 ) and are more affected by others ' negative evaluations of their academic competence ( Cole & Martin , 1997 ) . As a result , they experience a greater reduction of global self - worth and steeper increas"
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    ABSTRACT: This study tests the predictive associations between externalizing behaviors and internalizing symptoms and examines the mediating roles of social competence, parent-child conflicts, and academic achievement. Using youth-, parent-, and teacher-reported longitudinal data on a sample of 523 boys and 460 girls from late childhood to early adolescence, we found evidence for pathways between externalizing behaviors and internalizing symptoms in both directions. Parent-child conflict, but not social competence and academic achievement, was found to be a significant mediator such that externalizing behaviors predicted parent-child conflicts, which in turn, predicted internalizing symptoms. Internalizing symptoms showed more continuity during early adolescence for girls than boys. For boys, academic achievement was unexpectedly, positively predictive of internalizing symptoms. The results highlight the importance of facilitating positive parental and caregiver involvement during adolescence in alleviating the risk of co-occurring psychopathology.
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    • "Indeed, involvement in violence is associated with developmental trajectory failure, depressive and internalizing symptoms, and suicide behaviors [1,2,6,8,20,21] through child maladaptation, stress physiology, damage to cognitive development, and psychopathology development [7,22,23]. School difficulty may progressively favor school disengagement, absenteeism, and psychological disorders [24]. Depression could alter executive functions, cognitive ability and work performance [25-27] leading to more living difficulties and drugs uses to cope [2,4,10-12,28-30]. "
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