Relationship between grade retention and psychological outcomes during adolescence
Freiburger, Matthew Bradley
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The aim of the current study was to examine the relationship between the experience of grade retention and self-report ratings of depression and competence during adolescence. Participants were enrolled in a public middle school in the southeastern United States. Three comparison groups were created: a pure retention group, a group of students on grade level but considered low-performing based on their fifth grade standardized test scores, and a group of typically achieving students on grade level. Students completed rating scales to self-report depressive symptomology and perceptions of the self related to competence and self-adequacy in various domains. Results suggest that grade retention is associated with higher ratings of depression and lower self-perceptions. Limitations and implications for future research are discussed.