The protective role of self-compassion on test anxiety among adolescents

Dean O'Driscoll, Maria McAleese

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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A growing body of work has begun to identify the benefits of self-compassion in promoting positive mental health and wellbeing for adolescents. Test anxiety is a form of anxiety elicited in response to examinations, which can negatively impact academic achievement and wellbeing. The current pilot study explored the effect of self-compassion on test anxiety among adolescents, while controlling for the effects of gender and general anxiety. Participants were adolescents (n = 47), aged 16 to 17 years old, enrolled in a post-primary school in Northern Ireland and studying for qualifications after compulsory education. Hierarchical regression analysis found that higher levels of self-compassion were related to reduced test anxiety. However, female adolescents and those with higher levels of general anxiety reported greater test anxiety. The findings highlight the potential value of self-compassion as a protective factor against test anxiety for young people in schools. The implications for practitioners supporting young people with mental health and wellbeing difficulties are considered.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPastoral Care in Education
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2022


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