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It’s my life : staying in control. Developing a school-based intervention to facilitate adolescent behaviour change with respect to alcohol consumption

Bragg, J


J Bragg



Trends in adolescent alcohol consumption are declining, however remain a cause for concern. Research evidences a relationship between alcohol-related mortality and socioeconomic deprivation, more disadvantaged social groups tending to experience disproportionately higher levels of alcohol attributable harm. Amongst adolescents, there is an association between school disengagement and likelihood to engage with risky behaviours followed by poor academic outcomes. The social determinants for health and education overlap considerably, therefore the premise underpinning this study proposes that trying to improve low wellbeing as a trait of low socioeconomic status and predictor of problematic drinking, might not only influence healthier attitudes and behaviours regarding alcohol consumption, but also improve self esteem and wellbeing, and encourage school engagement leading to positive educational outcomes.

A universal whole-class intervention was developed to target 11-12 year olds, designed to embed into the English secondary personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) curriculum. The six-week programme of activities took a pupil focused learning approach, drawing upon motivational interviewing and role play amongst other successful components evidenced by the research literature and behavioural theory to encourage intrinsic motivation towards healthier behaviour. Two feasibility studies were conducted in four different school contexts, specifically targeting areas of significant socioeconomic deprivation in the north west of England. Implementation of the intervention and evaluation measures were assessed using a mixed methods research design. Analysis of pre- and post-intervention survey data (matched sample of 89 pupils) and interview transcripts (6 teachers and 20 pupils) revealed broadly successful outcomes. The intervention was considered engaging and enjoyable and was valued by the teachers. One school subsequently chose to deliver the programme for the whole of their new year 7 intake and another school has incorporated elements of the intervention into their PSHE curriculum.

These positive outcomes provide the justification to conduct further research to evaluate the effectiveness of participating in the intervention classes when compared to a control group.


Bragg, J. It’s my life : staying in control. Developing a school-based intervention to facilitate adolescent behaviour change with respect to alcohol consumption. (Thesis). University of Salford

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Apr 8, 2020
Publicly Available Date Apr 8, 2020
Award Date Feb 1, 2020


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