The California School Psychologist

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 9–19 | Cite as

Strength-Based Assessment and School Psychology: A Summary and Synthesis

  • Shane R. JimersonEmail author
  • Jill D. Sharkey
  • Vanessa Nyborg
  • Michael J. Furlong
Special Topic Article


During the past decade there has been an increasing interest in positive psychology, which promotes a shift away from the traditional deficit-based model of mental health to a framework that emphasizes social-emotional strengths. The building of strengths and an emphasis on the prevention of problems are at the forefront of positive psychology and equally important in the field of school psychology. Based on a review of the extant literature, this article addresses four important questions: (a) What is strength-based assessment? (b) Why use strength-based assessment in school psychology? (c) What are examples of strength-based assessments? and (d) What are the limitations and needs for further research related to strength-based assessment? Implications for both research and practice are emphasized throughout.

Key Words

Strength-Based Assessment School Deficits Assets Strengths 


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Copyright information

© California Association of School Psychologists 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shane R. Jimerson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jill D. Sharkey
    • 1
  • Vanessa Nyborg
    • 1
  • Michael J. Furlong
    • 1
  1. 1.Gevirtz Graduate School of Education; Center for School-Based Youth DevelopmentUniversity of California, Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

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