In a new study, carried out by sociology professor Jane D. McLeod at Indiana University, it has been found that behavioral problems, rather than depression, in young students are associated with bad grades.
McLeod used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), which followed thousands of middle and high school students through their changes into adulthood. She studied student’s GPAs from that year and when they achieved an advanced degree in 2008-2009.
McLeod found that students who had such problems with depression also had issues with substance abuse, delinquency, and attention, making depression a small factor in their declined school performance. McLeod stated, “The argument we make in our study is what’s really happening is that youths who are depressed also have other problems as well, and it’s those other problems that are adversely affecting their achievement.”
Students with two or more of the aforementioned problems subsequently had lower GPAs and attained lesser degrees than students with only one problem.
In conclusion to the study, McLeod identified ways to help students with these issues, saying, “This suggests to me that schools should reconsider the approach they take to dealing with these students. Perhaps, they should think about moving away from punitive approaches towards approaches aimed at integrating these students into the school community.”
As a student with behavioral issues, including substance abuse and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), I think the school system could have done a lot more to aid to my needs, or at least been more aware of my issues. I believe I could have achieved more academic-wise if more had been done for me.
- Nauert, Rick. “Behavioral Problems, Not Depression, Linked to Poor Grades.” Psych Central. Psych Central. 30 Nov. 2012. Web. 3 Dec. 2012.