Literature Review

Initiative Description: Systematic review was conducted to identify and describe school-based prevention and early intervention programs for depression and to evaluate their effectiveness in reducing depressive symptoms. A large proportion of the programs identified were based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and delivered by a mental health professional or graduate student over 8-12 sessions.

Study Results: Indicated programs, which targeted students exhibiting elevated levels of depression, were found to be the most effective, with effect sizes for all programs ranging from 0.21 to 1.40. Teacher program leaders and the employment of attention control conditions were associated with fewer significant effects.

Reference: Calear, A. L., & Christensen, H. (2010). Systematic review of school-based prevention and early intervention programs for depression. Journal Of Adolescence, 33(3), 429-438. doi:10.1016/j.adolescence.2009.07.004

Level of Evidence: 2 out of 5 stars Good