ERIC Number: ED411341
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Nov
At-Risk Students: Who Are They and What Helps Them Succeed? Research Brief #17.
Westfall, Amy; Pisapia, John
The purpose of this research brief is to summarize the literature on research conducted with at-risk students. Emerging from the research are three central groups of factors that are characteristic of at-risk students: (1) social and family background; (2) personal problems; and (3) school factors. In spite of the presence of several risk factors, there are some students who have developed characteristics and coping skills that help them succeed. These students can be termed "resilient" because they are able to recover from or adapt to life's stressors or problems. Resilient characteristics appear to fall into the same general categories as risk factors. Bearing these factors in mind, educators and policy makers need to foster protective mechanisms that encourage resilience, and they should design programs that address early educational experiences and issues related to adolescent childbearing and other problems that can cause an end to schooling. Attributes of successful programs are: (1) early intervention; (2) positive school climate; (3) effective school personnel; (4) small class size; (5) parent involvement; (6) self-esteem and support building; (7) guidance and mental health counseling; (8) social and life skills/vocational education; (9) peer involvement and extracurricular activities; and (10) easing grade level transitions. Successful programs must also allow for the ages and grade levels of participants, with appropriate activities and lessons. (SLD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Class Size, Coping, Counseling, Early Intervention, Educational Environment, Elementary Secondary Education, Family Influence, High Risk Students, Individual Differences, Parent Participation, Program Development, Resilience (Personality), Self Esteem, Social Influences
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Metropolitan Educational Research Consortium, Richmond, VA.
Note: Research reported in this Brief is extracted from the Metropolitan Educational Research Consortium products on at-risk students.