School-Related Stress: Children with and without Disabilities.Report as inadecuate

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This study examined school-related stress in children with and without disabilities, specifically the sources and manifestations of such stress and whether children with disabilities experience greater degrees of school-related stress than children without disabilities. The nondisabled group comprised 7,200 grade 4-12 students from urban and suburban school districts in Connecticut and Rhode Island. Subjects with disabilities were 249 students, of whom 43.8 percent had developmental disabilities (learning disabilities and mental retardation) and 54.2 percent had emotional disabilities. All subjects were given the School Situation Survey, a measure of school-related sources and manifestations of stress in children. (Survey items are listed.) Findings indicated that students with disabilities generally scored higher on the scales related to Teacher Interactions and Peer Interactions, while children without disabilities scored higher on scales related to Academic Stress and Academic Self Concept. However, only the intergroup differences at the high school level on the Peer Interactions and Academic Stress scales were statistically significant. Students with disabilities scored higher on all three manifestations scales (Emotional, Behavioral, and Physiological) regardless of grade level, but the only statistical significance was for middle school students on the behavioral and physiological scales. (Contains 21 references.) (DB)

Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Age Differences, Behavior Patterns, Developmental Disabilities, Elementary Secondary Education, Emotional Disturbances, Emotional Problems, Learning Disabilities, Mental Retardation, Peer Relationship, Questionnaires, Self Evaluation (Individuals), Stress Variables, Student Adjustment, Student Attitudes, Teacher Student Relationship

Author: Helms, Barbara J.


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