A SCHOOL-BASED MINDFULNESS INTERVENTION FOR URBAN YOUTH: EXPLORING MODERATORS OF INTERVENTION EFFECTS

Authors


  • This research was supported by grants from the Mind and Life Institute, the Attias Family Foundation, the Center for Prevention of Youth Violence and Center for Adolescent Health at Johns Hopkins University, the Penn State Prevention Research Center, and NIMH Prevention Research in Mental Health Training Grant T32 MH 018834.

  • We thank the Holistic Life Foundation for developing and delivering the intervention, as well as the schools, teachers, and students who participated.

Please address correspondence to: Laura Feagans Gould, University of North Carolina at Greensboro. E-mail: lfgould@uncg.edu

Abstract

This study examines gender, grade-level, and baseline depressive symptoms as potential moderators of a school-based mindfulness intervention's impact on the self-regulatory outcomes of urban youth. Ninety-seven participants from four urban public schools were randomly assigned to an intervention or wait-list control condition. Fourth and fifth graders in the intervention condition received a 12-week yoga-inspired mindfulness program. Using methods outlined by Aiken and West (1991), a series of models estimated the interaction effect of moderators of interest on adjusted posttest self-regulatory outcomes. Results indicate that gender and grade did not moderate intervention impacts. However, baseline depressive symptoms moderated both impulsive action and involuntary engagement stress responses such that intervention youth reporting lower levels of baseline depressive symptoms were more likely to evidence decreases in these problematic stress responses relative to control youth. Findings highlight the need for future studies to examine moderators of mindfulness-based interventions impacts on youth outcomes.

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