Psychosocial risk factors associated with depressive symptoms among adolescents in secondary schools in mainland china: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Xinfeng Tang, Suqin Tang, Zhihong Ren, Daniel Fu Keung Wong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: The objective of the study is to systematically estimate the effect size of psychosocial risk factors for depressive symptoms among adolescents in secondary schools in mainland China.

Method: A literature search was conducted in both English and Chinese databases. This meta-analysis used a random-effects model to estimate the effect size.

Results: Fifteen psychosocial risk factors were identified in a total of 164 articles. The results revealed the absolute value of effect size ranging from 0.16 to 0.43. Among them, poor parent–child communication (r = 0.43), negative life events (r = 0.40), academic pressure (r = 0.40), abuse (r = 0.33), poor family functioning (r = 0.33), bullying (r = 0.32), and poor family cohesion (r = 0.32) were associated with depression with a medium to large effect. Moderator analysis shows that grade, study quality, mean age, and gender were significant moderators of at least one factor for depression.

Limitations: Limitations included the heterogeneity which is largely unexplained, and the inability to investigate the interactions of different factors and to determine the direction of causal relationships between psychosocial factors and depression in the present meta-analysis.

Conclusions: This study suggests that family-related factors and school-related factors may be significantly associated with depressive symptoms in Chinese secondary school students. Further research is needed to develop effective strategies to modify these factors in depression prevention programmes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-165
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Volume263
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Feb 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

User-Defined Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • China
  • Depression
  • Meta-analysis
  • Risk factors
  • Secondary schools

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Psychosocial risk factors associated with depressive symptoms among adolescents in secondary schools in mainland china: A systematic review and meta-analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this