Transition to middle school: Self-concept changes
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Onetti W, Fernández-García JC, Castillo- Rodríguez A (2019) Transition to middle school: Self-concept changes. PLoS ONE 14(2): e0212640.
Self-concept influences identity and the way that people behave, and it fluctuates over time. The main purpose of this study was to analyze fluctuations in the dimensions of self-concept as a function of gender, educational level, grade, age, physical activity, and weight. In total, 712 Spanish adolescents who were in the 5th and 8th grades (354 boys and 358 girls) and 10 to 14 years old (M = 11.9; SD = 1.3) participated in this study. The Self-Concept Questionnaire, Form 5 was used to analyze several dimensions of self-concept (academic, social, emotional, family, and physical), using the average scores in each dimension. The data showed strong differences in the dimensions of self-concept during the school transition. Middle-school students, compared to elementary-school students, showed significantly lower levels in almost all dimensions (academic, social, family, and physical). Furthermore, student age was a negative predictor of the social and academic dimensions, explaining 33% and 37% of the variance, respectively. Educational level and grade were smaller factors influencing the academic dimension (explaining 29% and 25% of the variance, respectively). The main findings revealed that the school transition and, specifically, increased age were associated with a lower self-concept. These results help us understand the need to strengthen psychological and educational self-concept at school.