Mindfulness and Resilience in Adolescence
This £6.4 million research programme is a Wellcome Trust Strategic Award, started in January 2015. It is being be carried out by teams at the University of Oxford, UCL (University College London) and the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, in collaboration with King’s College London and the University of Exeter, over seven years.
"Just as physical training is associated with physical health, psychological resilience training is associated with mental health"
The three-part study includes the first large randomised control trial of mindfulness training compared with ‘teaching as usual’ in 76 schools, which will involve nearly six thousand students aged 11 to 14. Other parts of the study are a programme of experimental research to establish whether and how mindfulness improves the mental resilience of teenagers and an evaluation of the most effective way to train teachers to deliver mindfulness classes to students.
The Oxford Mindfulness Centre has for some time been working on the field of mindfulness in schools in collaboration with several partners. A new project, funded by the Wellcome Trust, started in January 2015. It is based on the knowledge that adolescence is a vulnerable time for the onset of mental illness as half of mental health problems start by the age of 14 and 75 percent by the age of 18 By promoting good mental health and intervening early, particularly in the crucial childhood and teenage years, we can help to prevent mental illness from developing and mitigate its effects when it does (Department of Health, 2011).