Aspects of well-being

NPC's Well-being Measure covers eight aspects of the well-being of 11-16 year olds:

  • Self-esteem - A child's appraisal of his or her own worth. It is closely linked with self-confidence, and is important for a healthy, happy life.
  • Emotional well-being - The state of a child's mental health or extent to which a child experiences depressive emotions, as well as worries and other stressful feelings. Low scores are linked to anxiety and depression.
  • Resilience - The capacity to cope with stress and difficulties. It involves a positive and purposeful attitude to life and is associated with high self-esteem and interpersonal problem-solving skills. It is a particularly important protective factor to foster in children, enabling them to deal better with future negative events.
  • Satisfaction with friends - The child's satisfaction or feelings about the quality of his or her close friendships both in and out of school.
  • Satisfaction with family - The child's satisfaction or feelings about his or her family relationships, including the quality and quantity of time spent with parents or carers, and how well the family gets on.
  • Satisfaction with community - The child's satisfaction or feelings about his or her local area and neighbours or people in the community
  • Satisfaction with school - The child's satisfaction or feelings about his or her school environment, including how enjoyable and interesting it is, and how safe it feels.
  • Life satisfaction - A global measure of a child's overall happiness or satisfaction, based on a single question where the child rates his or her life on a scale from 0 to 10.

All these aspects are related to how young people feel and what they think about their lives - what is known as 'subjective well-being'.

These eights aspects were chosen after a wide-ranging review of the literature on well-being and child psychology, and focus on what is most important to young people's experience of the world.

For details on how we developed NPC's Well-being Measure you can download our report 'Feelings count', available on NPC's website.

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