Research

Character and Attainment: Does Character Make the Grade? James Arthur and James O'Shaugnessy, The Jubilee Centre for Character and Values, University of Birmingham

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​Key Findings

"The research literature shows a clear and positive correlation between character education and academic attainment.  There is a good deal of evidence of the link between character education and behaviour (and attitudes to learning) in schools, and between behaviour and grade attainment."

DfE: The Impact of Pupil Behaviour and Wellbeing on Educational Outcomes

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​Key Findings

Children with higher levels of emotional, behavioural, social, and school wellbeing, on average, have higher levels of academic achievement and are more engaged in school, both concurrently and in later years.

Children with better emotional wellbeing make more progress in primary school and are more engaged in secondary school.

Public Health England: The link between pupil health and wellbeing and attainment​

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Key Findings

Pupils with better health and wellbeing are likely to achieve better academically.

Effective social and emotional competencies are associated with greater health and wellbeing, and better achievement.

The culture, ethos and environment of a school influences the health and wellbeing of pupils and their readiness to learn.

Teaching resilience, sense of purpose in schools can prevent depression and improve grades, according to research

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Key Findings

​Researchers looked at two evidence-based programmes: The Penn Resiliency Program (PRP) and the Positive Psychology Program (PPP).  The PRP encourages optimism and teaches assertiveness, creative brainstorming, decision-making, relaxation and other coping and problem-solving skills.  The researchers reviewed 19 studies over 20 years, involving 2000 8-15 year-olds and found that, having undergone the programme, the children were more optimistic and had fewer depressive symptoms for up to a year.  Findings also showed that the programme reduced hopelessness and clinical levels of depression and anxiety. The PPP encouraged pupils to identify and use their key character strenghts, as well as writing down three good things every day for seven days.  347 high school students rated their love of learning, kindness, behavioural problems, enjoyment of school and grades and were then randomly assigned to take part or not take part in the programme.   Those that did reported more enjoyment and engagement in school. Their teachers reported those students were more curious about what they were doing, loved learning and showed more creativity.

Social and emotional learning programmes that work

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Key Findings

Policy makers, educators, and the public should support the incorporation of evidence-based SEL programming into school and after-school settings. One important question for future research and practice is to determine the extent to which co-ordinated programming efforts (eg, Universal plus Indicated or During- School plus After-School) produce more powerful effects than when programmes are offered separately. We expect that combined programmes would have even more potential to promote positive school and life success for more pupils, and believe that such programmes should be delivered and carefully evaluated.

Fostering Academic Resilience: A brief review of the evidence

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Key Findings

Research shows that pupils’ attainment can be raised when their resilience is enhanced. 

"...resilience is highly correlated with academic achievement and educational success (Werner and Smith, 1992 in Hart et al, 2007 p85).  Engaging in school and reaping its rewards both reflects and enhances a child's capacity to succeed over the whole lifespan.  For thee reasons, it might be argued that a good education is resilience" Hart et all 2007 p85​. 

The Impact of Resilience on the Academic Achievement of At-Risk Students in the Upward Bound Program in Georgia

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Key Findings

Resilience behavior can be learned by all students.

Resilient children have high self-efficacy and high student involvement at school. Also according to researchers, schools that foster resilience share many commonalities with effective schools.​

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