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School-based strategies to prevent violence, trauma, and psychopathology: The challenges of going to scale

  • Lawrence Aber (a1), Joshua L. Brown (a2), Stephanie M. Jones (a3), Juliette Berg (a1) and Catalina Torrente (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 18 April 2011

Children's trauma-related mental health problems are widespread, largely untreated and constitute significant barriers to academic achievement and attainment. Translational research has begun to identify school-based interventions to prevent violence, trauma and psychopathology. We describe in detail the findings to date on research evaluating one such intervention, the Reading, Writing, Respect, and Resolution (4Rs) Program. The 4Rs Program has led to modest positive impacts on both classrooms and children after 1 year that appear to cascade to more impacts in other domains of children's development after 2 years. This research strives not only to translate research into practice but also translate practice into research. However, considerable challenges must be met for such research to inform prevention strategies at population scale.

Corresponding author
Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Lawrence Aber, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University, 82 Washington Square East, New York, NY 10003; E-mail:
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J. L. Aber , J. L. Brown , & S. M. Jones (2003). Developmental trajectories toward violence in middle childhood: Course, demographic differences, and response to school-based intervention. Developmental Psychology, 39, 324348.

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J. L. Brown , S. M. Jones , M. D. LaRusso , & J. L. Aber (2010). Improving classroom quality: Teacher influences and experimental impacts of the 4Rs Program. Journal of Educational Psychology, 102, 153167.

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S. M. Jones , J. L. Brown , W. L. G. Hoglund , & J. L. Aber (2010). Impacts of an integrated school-based social–emotional learning and literacy intervention on third-grade social–emotional and academic outcomes. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 78, 829842.

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R. C. Pianta , A. J. Mashburn , J. T. Downer , B. K. Hamre , & L. Justice (2008). Effects of web-mediated professional development resources on teacher–child interactions in pre-kindergarten classrooms. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 23, 431451.

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Development and Psychopathology
  • ISSN: 0954-5794
  • EISSN: 1469-2198
  • URL: /core/journals/development-and-psychopathology
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