There is a new Best Evidence in Brief and this time I picked this study from this biweekly newsletter written up by Justin Hill:
A recent meta-analysis and narrative synthesis on the association between psychosocial factors during adolescence and participation in education and employment as a young adult was conducted by Sumeyra N. Tayfur and colleagues. The meta-analysis investigated the association between adolescent behavioral problems, peer problems, and prosocial skills with participation in education and employment between the ages of 18 to 25. Five studies investigated self-reported behavioral problems—defined as rule-breaking, aggressiveness, and other disruptive or delinquent behavior—and its association with being defined as “not in education, employment or training” (NEET). The meta-analysis demonstrated a significant effect size (OR = 1.48) for behavioral problems. Four studies investigated the association between peer problems—including bullying, violence, and other forms of peer aggression—and NEET. The meta-analysis also demonstrated a significant effect size (OR = 1.27) for peer problems. The meta-analysis did not demonstrate a significant effect size for the association between prosocial skills and NEET.Beyond this meta-analysis, the authors also complete a narrative synthesis of other adolescent behaviors or beliefs and their associations with education and employment in young adulthood. An investigation of the association between adolescent substance abuse and NEET indicated mixed results for cannabis use and weak results for alcohol and tobacco use. Investigations of self-esteem, self-efficacy, and locus of control suggest low self-esteem, low self-efficacy, and external locus of control all had positive associations with NEET. Finally, higher educational aspirations were negatively associated with NEET.These findings provide evidence of the importance of early intervention programs for adolescents demonstrating the psychosocial factors investigated in this analysis, as these early interventions may help at-risk adolescents avoid dropping out of educational institutions or the workforce.