Is school not calling? Adolescents’ experiences at school, contributing factors and consequences for a healthy development

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    Schools represent an important environment for an adequate and healthy development of adolescents. They provide adolescents with a number of opportunities for experiencing new relationships, interpersonal growth and, more importantly, for gaining new knowledge and skills necessary for their further academic development and possible professional orientation in the future. Considering the importance of the school environment and the fact that adolescents spend many hours at school each week, it is important to ensure optimal working conditions and positive experiences at school. However, results of the international HBSC (Health and Behaviour of School-aged Children) study have shown that the amount of positive school experiences of adolescents in Slovakia and other Eastern European countries is decreasing. This thesis focused on the factors related to adolescents’ school experiences and possible impact of these experiences on adolescents’ health and development. Its results show that teachers contribute quite much to adolescents’ satisfaction, academic performance and well-being at school. Furthermore, we found that negative experiences at school are associated with several negative health and behavioural outcomes such as health symptoms, hopelessness, involvement in fights and truancy. Our findings provide specific parts of the educational system which are suitable for improvement. Tailoring proper and effective ways of education, adjustment of the physical environment and improving the interpersonal competences of teachers may be important targets for interventions aimed at enhancing the education process and the academic trajectory of adolescents, and at prevention of negative health consequences.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Groningen
    • Reijneveld, Menno, Supervisor
    • Madarasová Gecková, Andrea, Supervisor
    • de Winter, Andrea, Co-supervisor
    • Husarova, Daniela, Co-supervisor
    Award date19-Jun-2023
    Place of Publication[Groningen]
    Publication statusPublished - 2023

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