Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Protective Factors

"When stressful life events outweigh the protective factors, even the most resilient . . . can develop problems (Werner, 1990, p. 111)."

"Protective buffers...seem to be helpful to us [as] members of the human race....[They] appear to make a more profound impact on the life course of individuals who grow up and overcome adversity than do specific risk factors. "
--Dr. Emmy Werner (1996)

So what are the much needed research-based protective factors?

1. Caring relationships
2. High expectations (I believe you can do it!)
3. Opportunities for meaningful participation
4. Social competence: cooperation & communication skills, empathy and problem-solving skills
5. Autonomy & sense of self: personal conviction, self-efficacy, self-awareness
6. Sense of meaning and purpose: optimism, goals & aspirations


Gu, Q. & Day, C. (2007). Teachers resilience: A necessary condition for effectiveness. Teaching and Teacher Education 23, 1302–1316.

Constantine, N.A., Benard, B., & Diaz, M. (1999). Measuring Protective Factors and Resilience Traits in Youth: The Healthy Kids Resilience Assessment. Paper presented at the Seventh Annual Meeting of the Society for Prevention Research, New Orleans, LA

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