Date of Award


Degree Name

PhD Nursing

Dissertation Committee

Dr. Susan L. Instone, Chairperson; Dr. Cynthia D. Connelly, Member; Dr. Donna L. Agan, Member


adolescents, Developmental psychology, efficacy, nursing, school-based support group, school nurses, self-esteem, social support


Adolescents are faced with daily obstacles that affect their ability to progress into adulthood successfully. Rising divorce rates and subsequent single parenting, adolescent pregnancy, drug and alcohol abuse, violence, and lack of parental involvement represent only a few of the many issues teens confront. School nurses are on the front lines, attempting to educate youth against an alarming rise in personal and social controversies that impede their ability to come to school ready to learn. As part of the educational team, school nurses are in a prime position to develop and integrate intervention strategies aimed at assisting adolescents during this tumultuous period in their lives. Research has linked self-esteem and social support with health compromising behaviors. Likewise, research has suggested a link between support group participation and a decrease in health compromising behaviors. School-based support groups are one intervention strategy that is currently being used to improve students' self-esteem and social support. The purpose of this research is to evaluate their efficacy on self-esteem and social support. Thirty-seven students from an urban Southwestern high school participated in a 10-week support group. Self-esteem and social support were measured using Rosenberg's Self-Esteem Scale and the Personal Resource Questionnaire Part II. Results suggested that self-esteem and social support were moderately, positively correlated and, while students who participated in support groups did not report a statistically significant change in either self-esteem or social support, further research is needed to explore the relationship between these variables.

Document Type

Dissertation: Open Access



Included in

Nursing Commons