Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 1543–1564 | Cite as

Emotion Regulation in Adolescent Well-Being and Positive Education

  • Lucy Morrish
  • Nikki Rickard
  • Tan Chyuan Chin
  • Dianne Anne Vella-Brodrick
Review Article


Emotion regulation (ER) becomes increasingly important across adolescent development, and promotes psychological flexibility, resilience and well-being in youth. Positive education programs (PEPs) combine academic training with positive psychology interventions (PPIs) to increase well-being and reduce mental ill-health. Despite considerable overlap between PPIs and ER models, the role and relevance of ER to PEPs remains unclear. This review aimed to evaluate the relationship of ER to PEPs targeting adolescents. First, to evaluate the relationship of ER to domains of well-being targeted by school-based PPIs. Second, to examine whether school-based PPIs can improve adolescents’ ER capacity. Third, to evaluate the role of ER in well-being outcomes of PEPs. Results support the relevance of ER to domains of well-being outlined by the revised PERMA model, including positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning, and health. ER can influence the degree to which students benefit from PEP participation. It remains to be determined whether ER capacity is improved as a result of exposure to positive education programs. Findings are limited by the small and heterogeneous group of interventions examined, and the use of inconsistent ER measures. Further research of the role of ER in positive education may contribute to greater understanding of the mechanisms underlying their effectiveness and further promote the psychological well-being of adolescents.


Emotion regulation Positive education Resilience Well-being Adolescence Social emotional learning PERMA 



This project was funded by an ARC Linkage grant-LP130100357. (2013–2016) Vella-Brodrick, D. A., Rickard, N. S. Cross, D. S; Hattie, J. A. Robinson, J. & King, C. A. Enhancing adolescent mental health through positive education.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Positive Psychology, Graduate School of EducationThe University of MelbourneCarltonAustralia
  2. 2.School of Psychological SciencesMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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