Risk and Protective Factors

Risk and Protective Factors Exist in Multiple Contexts

Before transitioning into the interview we will see how all of the topics previously discussed can be manifested in relation to this diagram as potential risk factors for Teresa. Moreover, we can also start to hypothesize potential protective factors that can help mitigate some of these risk factors, which will be further explored in the 3rd interview.

A Risk factor is any factor associated with the increased likelihood of a behavior that usually has negative consequences.

And a Protective factor is any factor that reduces the impact of a risk behavior that helps individuals not to engage in potentially harmful behavior. In most situations finding effective protective factors and implementing them can really help to mitigate current risk factors and promote an alternative pathway that can enable individuals to develop resiliency in order to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life.

Throughout the following interviews we can begin to see how various risk factors begin to unfold with Teresa and how these risk factors begin to works towards shaping some of her attitudes and behaviors.  It is important to consider however, that Teresa does not exist in isolation, but rather is engaged in relationships that operate within each of these context levels that influence her.  

Research has proven that the school environment is a key factor that influences the healthy development of young people. Furthermore, there is a strong correlation of students who are attached to their schools as having decrease chances towards engaging in anti-social behavior. Current research has also suggested that when students feel alienated or not belonging it can in fact lead to significant behavioral problems.

Throughout, all stages of the helping process these research findings as well the nature of intersectionality are important for school social workers to consider when trying to assess and...