School Mental Health

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 488–499 | Cite as

Self-concept, Social Skills, and Resilience as Moderators of the Relationship Between Stress and Childhood Depression

  • J. JaureguizarEmail author
  • M. Garaigordobil
  • E. Bernaras
Original Paper


The goal of this study is to explore the relationship between students’ self-reported stress and teacher-informed depression, and to determine whether students’ resilience, self-concept, and social skills moderate this relationship. The sample included 481 participants aged 7–10 years, with a total of 252 boys (52.4%) and 229 girls (47.6%). The participants were selected from schools in the Basque country, 59.5% from public schools (n = 286) and 40.5% from private/subsidized schools (n = 195). To measure the variables under study, we requested the teachers to complete a questionnaire on depressive symptomatology for each of their students (CDS-teacher), and the students completed another four assessment tools to evaluate their levels of stress (IECI), their self-concept (CAG), social skills (SSiS), and resilience (RSCA). We found a positive correlation between depression and school stress and a negative one between depression and intellectual self-concept, sense of control, social skills (cooperation and responsibility), and variables that make up resilience (optimism, adaptability, trust, support, and tolerance). We found that self-concept, social skills, and resilience all moderated the relationship between stress and childhood depression. The amount of variance explained in the moderation models obtained ranged from 18 to 76%. The results obtained may be useful for the design of prevention and intervention programs for childhood depression, including strengthening children’s self-concept, social skills, and resilience as protective factors against depression.


Childhood depression Stress Moderation Self-concept Social skills Resilience 



This study was funded by Alicia Koplowitz Foundation, with Grant No. FP15/62. The Alicia Koplowitz Foundation had no role in the study design, collection, analysis, or interpretation of the data, writing the manuscript, or the decision to submit the paper for publication.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology, Faculty of Education of BilbaoUniversity of the Basque CountryLejonaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Personality, Assessment and Psychological Treatments, Faculty of PsychologyUniversity of the Basque CountrySan SebastiánSpain
  3. 3.Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology, Faculty of Education, Philosophy and AnthropologyUniversity of the Basque CountrySan SebastiánSpain

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