Complete mental health in elementary school children: Understanding youth school functioning and adjustment

Gökmen Arslan, Kelly Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Complete mental health is characterized by the presence of well-being and the absence of psychopathological symptoms. Studies on the influence of complete mental health on general school functioning and school adjustment among youth is limited, but existing literature has shown its potential positive effects. The purpose of this study is to investigate how complete mental health status influences school functioning and adjustment among elementary school children. The study included 362 grade 5–8 students (10–14 years of age) from a public school in an urban city of Turkey. A series univariate analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed to investigate the differential effects of mental health status on youth school functioning and adjustment. The largest proportion of the participants was classified into the complete mental health group (n = 246, 68%), followed by vulnerable, troubled, and symptomatic–but–content groups. Post hoc comparison results showed that the complete mental health group felt greater connection to their school, had better academic functioning, showed more prosocial behaviors, and reported less bullying and victimization in school than the other groups. These results suggest that identifying both psychological distress and wellbeing is integral to understanding the overall adjustment and functioning of students in school settings.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Psychology
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Feb 2020

Keywords

  • Complete mental health
  • Positive psychology
  • School adjustment
  • School functioning
  • Youth

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