Children receiving 1 year or 1/2 year of a preventive social problem solving program in elementary school were compared with each other and with a no-treatment group upon entry into middle school. One year of training was significantly related to reductions in the severity of a variety of middle-school stressors. Most importantly, a clear mediating role for social problem solving (SPS) skills was found. Children lacking in SPS skills were more likely to experience intense stressors; however, possessing the skills was not necessarily predictive of adjustment to stressors. The results are discussed in terms of the implications of this asymmetry and the strong support given to the value of social problem solving as a preventive intervention for children.
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