Self-system Processes as a Mediator of School Connectedness and Depressive Symptomatology in African American and European American Adolescents

Stephanie M. Ernestus, Hazel M. Prelow, Melissa Ramrattan, Shawn A. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

School connectedness, or how much an adolescent feels supported and accepted at their school, can protect children negative adolescent mental health outcomes, including depressive symptoms. One potential explanatory mechanism for the relationship between school connectedness and depressive symptoms may be organized views of the self, called self-system processes. Self-system processes were conceptualized in this study as a composite of self-esteem, coping efficacy, and perceived competence. The present study tested self-system processes as a mediator of the relationship between school connectedness and depressive symptoms in a sample of 260 African American and European American adolescents aged 13-19 years. Self-system processes partially mediated the relationship between school connectedness and depressive symptoms for African American adolescents and fully mediated this relationship for European American adolescents. These findings underscore the need for a better understanding of how school-related variables differentially impact mental health outcomes for specific racial groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-183
Number of pages9
JournalSchool Mental Health
Volume6
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Keywords

  • Depression
  • Mediation
  • School connectedness
  • Self-system processes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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