Relationship between Depression and School Achievement in Elementary School Students

초등학생의 우울감과 학업성적 사이의 관련성 연구

  • Park, Hyunju (Kangwon National University, Chuncheon Campus, Department of Nursing)
  • 박현주 (강원대학교 춘천캠퍼스 간호학과)
  • Received : 2014.06.26
  • Accepted : 2014.10.10
  • Published : 2014.10.31


Several studies regarding the effects of academic achievement on mental health problems have been conducted in adolescents but not in elementary school students. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to examine the effects of school achievement on depression in Korean elementary school students. The participants were 1,048, 5th to 6th elementary students in Seoul, Korea. The Spearman correlations between school achievement and depression were -0.31 for boys and -0.37 for girls (p<0.001 for both). After controlling for grader, the family economic status and self-esteem, higher achiever group showed a significantly low risk for depression in boys and girls. This study suggests that the lower school achievement is associated with a depressive mood in Korean elementary students. Therefore, students with lower academic performance are a risk group for depression.


Depression;School achievement;Elementary school students


Supported by : 한국연구재단


  1. H. Remschmidt , M. Belfer, Mental Health Care for Children and Adolescent Worldwide: A Review, World Psychiatry, 4(3), pp. 147-153, 2005.
  2. Ministry of Health and Welfare & Korea Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Korea Health Statistics: Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. (KNHANES IV-3). p. 333. Ministry of Health and Welfare. 2010.
  3. Ministry of Health and Welfare, Korea Center for Disease Control and Prevention, & Ministry of Education. The 3rd(2007) Korean Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey Statistics. p. 181. Ministry of Health and Welfare. 2008.
  4. E. J. Kang, Korean Children's Mental Health Status and Policy Implications. Health and Welfare Policy Forum, 128, pp. 60-72, 2007.
  5. H. Sung, B. Lubin, J. Yi, Reliability and Validity of the Korean Youth Depression Adjective Check List (Y-DACL), Adolescence, 27(107), pp. 527-533, 1992.
  6. S. A. Alva, R. de Los Reyes, Psychosocial Stress, Internalized Symptoms, and the Academic Achievement of Hispanic Adolescents, Journal Adolescent Research, 14(3), pp.343-358. 1999. DOI:
  7. N. D. Feshbach, S. Feshbach, Affective Process and Academic Achievement, Child Development, 58(5), pp. 1335-1347, 1987. DOI:
  8. E. Lee, Construction of A Structural Model about Male and Female Adolescents' Alination, Depression, and Suicidal Thoughts, Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing, 37(4), pp. 576-85, 2007.
  9. A. Q. Brriga, J. W. Doran, S. B. Newell, E. M. Morrison, B. Baretti, B. D. Robbins, Relationships Between Problem Behaviors and Academic Achievement in Adolescents: The Unique Role of Attention Problems, Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorder, 10(4), pp. 233-240, 2002. DOI:
  10. O. Malinauskiene, R. Vosylis, Z. Rita, Longitudinal Examination of Relationships Between Problem Behaviors and Academic Achievement in Young Adolescents, Procedia Social and Behavioral Science, 15, pp. 3415-3421, 2011. DOI:
  11. Y. J. Lee, The Relationship Between Depressive Symptoms and School Performance in Early Adolescence, Unpublished master's thesis, Keimyung University, Daegu, pp. 20-24, 2007.
  12. L. Y. Abramson, G. I. Metalsky, L. B. Alloy, Hopelessness Depression: A Theory-based Subtype Depression, Psychological Review, 96(2), pp. 358-372, 1989. DOI:
  13. B. M. Dykman, Integrating Cognitive and Motivational Factors in Depression: Initial Test of A Goal-orientation Approach, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74(1), pp. 139-158, 1988. DOI:
  14. G. D. Sideridis, Goal Orientation, Academic Achievement, and Depression: Evidence in Favor of A Revised Goal Theory Framework, Journal of Educational Psychology, 97(3), pp. 366-375, 2005. DOI:
  15. A. M. Undheim, M. S. Sund, School Factors and The Emergence of Depressive Symptoms among Young Norwegian Adolescents, European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 14(8), pp. 446-453, 2005. DOI:
  16. N. Rosenberg, Society and The Adolescent Self-image, Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press, 1965.
  17. M. Kovacs, The Children's Depression Inventory: A Self-rated Depression Scale for School-aged Youngsters, Unpublished Manuscript, Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh, 1983.
  18. A. T. Beck, Depression: Clinical, Experimental and Theoretical Aspect, New York, NY, Harper & Row, 1967.
  19. S. C. Cho, Y. S. Lee, Development of The Korean Form of The Kovacs' Children's Depression Inventory, Journal of Korean Neuropsychiatry Association, 29, pp. 943-956, 1990.
  20. J. Cohen, P. Cohen, S. G. West, L. S. Aiken, Applied Multiple Regression/Correlation Analysis for The Behavioral Sciences. 3rd ed. Mahwah, NJ, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2003.
  21. M. McCabe, L. Ricciardelli, S. Banfield, Depressive Symptoms and Psychosocial Functioning in Preadolescent Children, Depression research and treatment, 2011. DOI:
  22. Y. S. Kim, M. J. Lee, Y. S. Suh, D. H. Kim, Relationship between Family Meals and Depressive Symptoms in Children, Korean Journal of Family Medicine, 34, pp. 206-212, 2013. DOI:
  23. S. A. Frojd, E. S. Nissinen, M. U. Pelkonen, M. J. Marttunen, A. M. Koivisto, R. Kaltiala-Heino, Depression and School Performance in Middle Adolescent Boys and Girls, Journal of Adolescence, 31(4), pp. 485-498, 2008. DOI:
  24. H. Y. Park, J. Heo, S. V. Subramanian, I. Kawachi, J. Oh, Socioeconomic Inequalities in Adolescent Depression in South Korea: A Multilevel Analysis, PloS one, 7(10), e47025, 2012. DOI: 0047025
  25. H. C. Lin, T. C. Tang, J. Y. Yen, C. H. Ko, C. H. Huang, S. C. Liu, C. F. Yen, Depression and Its Association with Self-esteem, Family, Peer and School Factors in A Population of 9586 Adolescents in Southern Taiwan, Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, 62(4), pp. 412-420, 2008. DOI:
  26. X. Shang, D. Wang, J. Wang, X. Hu, S. Du, Y. Li, Prevalence and Socioeconomic Status Correlation of Depressive Symptoms among Children Living in Urban Beijing, North American Journal of Medicine and Science, 3(3), pp. 153-159, 2010. DOI:
  27. G. Shahar, C. C. Henrich, A. Winokur, S. J. Blatt, G. P. Kupermine, B. J. Leadbeater, Self-criticism and Depressive Symptoms Interact To Predict Middle School Academic Achievement, Journal of Clinical Psychology. 62(1), pp. 147-155, 2006. DOI:

Cited by

  1. Comparison of Factors influencing Academic and Social self-concept between Multicultural and General children vol.16, pp.12, 2015,