Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Expressions of context: Studies of schools, families, and health risk behaviours
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2579-8798
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis explores the health behaviours of young people. The main focus is on risk behaviours, i.e. those which may have adverse consequences for health. Two fields of interest are looked at. On the one hand, the thesis explores social determinants of such behaviours, with particular focus on the influence of schools’ structural and social environment on health risk behaviours among youth. On the other hand, the thesis addresses the role of such behaviours in the relationship between childhood social inequalities and adult health. In terms of theory, the study sets out from Coleman's view of the association between structure and agency and the assumption that macro level structures and patterns can be understood on the basis of individual actors’ actions. The thesis consists of four studies addressing different, but related, aspects of the above areas of interest. The overall conclusion of studies I-III is that the school context has direct and indirect effects on young people's risk behaviours. The results of multilevel analyses indicate, more specifically, that students who attend more advantaged schools report more risk behaviours such as smoking, alcohol- and drug use than students at more disadvantaged schools. Self-reported crime is however higher in the more disadvantaged school settings. Further analyses show that a school's social and normative climate also is important for the extent to which youth consume alcohol, smoke, or have used drugs. These risk behaviours are most prevalent in schools where a large proportion of the parents have a more permissive attitude towards alcohol and smoking, and where teacher-rated levels of trust and informal social control (collective efficacy) are high. The results show, further, that school contexts also act indirectly on youth risk behaviours. Young people who reports weak bonds with their parents tend generally to be more involved in risk behaviours than those who report strong bonds. This tendency is reinforced in more advantaged school settings. Finally, Study IV demonstrates that youth risk behaviours act accumulatively and indirectly on later health, rather than directly. Moreover, the importance of risk behaviours for later health varies between the birth cohorts. Health behaviours explain a larger part of the relationship between socioeconomic conditions in childhood and health as an adult in the younger cohort.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Sociology, Stockholm University , 2016. , 59 p.
Series
Health Equity Studies, ISSN 1651-5390 ; 20
National Category
Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-135348ISBN: 978-91-7649-512-4ISBN: 978-91-7649-513-1OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-135348DiVA: diva2:1044841
Public defence
2016-12-16, William-Olssonsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 14, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Manuscript. Paper 4: Manuscript.

Available from: 2016-11-23 Created: 2016-11-05 Last updated: 2016-11-22Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. A Multilevel Study on Ethnic and Socioeconomic School Stratification and Health-Related Behaviors Among Students in Stockholm
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A Multilevel Study on Ethnic and Socioeconomic School Stratification and Health-Related Behaviors Among Students in Stockholm
2015 (English)In: Journal of School Health, ISSN 0022-4391, E-ISSN 1746-1561, Vol. 85, no 12, 871-879 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND

This study examines the extent to which high alcohol consumption, drug use, and delinquency vary between schools with different socioeconomic characteristics, over and above the pupil's own sociodemographic background.

METHODS

Analyses are based on data on 5484 ninth-grade students distributed over 93 schools in Stockholm, from the 2010 Stockholm School Survey. School-level information was retrieved from the Swedish National Agency for Education. School disadvantage was determined by combining information on the level of education among parents and the share of pupils with a nonnative background, 2 aspects that have been shown to be central to school segregation in Sweden.

RESULTS

Results indicate significant school-to-school differences in relation to all outcomes. The risk for high alcohol consumption and drug use is greater in more advantaged school settings, adjusting for individual characteristics, whereas the opposite is true in relation to criminal behavior. The school's level of collective efficacy also seems to play an important, albeit not mediating, role.

CONCLUSIONS

Regardless of an adolescent's own background, the risk of having adverse health behaviors is higher at certain schools compared to others. However, school socioeconomic factors do not influence health behaviors consistently; instead, it seems as if the association varies depending on the behavior under study.

Keyword
alcohol use, drug use, adolescence, risk factors, school environment
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-122732 (URN)10.1111/josh.12344 (DOI)000364331700006 ()
Available from: 2015-11-10 Created: 2015-11-10 Last updated: 2016-11-11Bibliographically approved
2. Family composition and youth health risk behaviors: the role of parental relation and the school context
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Family composition and youth health risk behaviors: the role of parental relation and the school context
2016 (English)In: Child Indicators Research, ISSN 1874-897X, E-ISSN 1874-8988Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Children not residing with both parents have been shown to be more at risk of negative developmental outcomes than children residing in two-parent families. Few studies have explored how other central contexts may interact with family characteristics to hinder or facilitate youth adjustment. This study examines how aspects of family structure and family processes are associated with youth health risk behaviors and interact with the structural characteristics of schools. The analyses are based on data from the Stockholm School Survey and consist of 5 002 ninth-grade students distributed over 92 schools in the Stockholm area in 2010. School information has been gathered from the Swedish National Agency for Education. Random intercept and fully random models have been used. Results show that adolescents not living with both their parents are more involved in health risk behaviors than adolescents that do. Poor parent–child relations accounts for more of the disadvantage associated with non-traditional family structures than differences in socioeconomic background. Results further suggest that health risk behaviors are more prevalent in more advantaged school settings, net the effect of individual background characteristics. Moreover, advantage school settings are found to accentuate the detrimental effects of poor parent–child relations on health risk behaviors. In conclusion, the study suggests that the effect of family type and family processes on youth behavior is susceptible to contextual effects of the school environment and that more advantage school settings have detrimental direct and indirect effects on youth health risk behaviors.

National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-131453 (URN)10.1007/s12187-016-9380-4 (DOI)
Available from: 2016-06-20 Created: 2016-06-20 Last updated: 2016-11-11
3. School-level (dis)advantage and adolescents’ health risk behaviours: the role of school collective efficacy and norms
Open this publication in new window or tab >>School-level (dis)advantage and adolescents’ health risk behaviours: the role of school collective efficacy and norms
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Drawing upon ideas stemming from Social Disorganization Theory (SDT), this study explores how structural and social aspects of the school context affect youth health risk behaviours (HRB) in terms of smoking, alcohol and/or drug use. A key focus is to investigate the joint effect of school collective efficacy and schools’ substance use norms on students’ HRB. Analyses are based on combined information from two independent data collections conducted in 2014 among ninth grade students (n=5122) and teachers (n=1105) in 81 senior-level schools in Stockholm. Results from multilevel analyses suggested that the proneness to engage in HRB varies depending on the socioeconomic profile of the school. Youth in socioeconomically advantaged schools were more prone to engage in HRB than youth in disadvantaged school settings. Furthermore, collective incentives for exerting social control against HRB seem to be weaker in schools were conventional values towards substance use (anti-substance use norms) are suppressed.

National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-135345 (URN)
Available from: 2016-11-05 Created: 2016-11-05 Last updated: 2016-11-11Bibliographically approved
4. A cohort study exploring the role of health behaviours in the association between childhood socioeconomic circumstances and midlife health
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A cohort study exploring the role of health behaviours in the association between childhood socioeconomic circumstances and midlife health
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Despite the many studies on the socioeconomic gradient in health, our understanding of the underlying mechanisms remains incomplete This study used path analysis to explore the association between childhood socioeconomic disadvantage and adult health and the extent to which this association is mediated by health behaviours. The study used information from two cohorts, a central aim was to explore the extent to which the associations examined in the study changed over time. A sample of 825 people aged 15 to 20 in 1968 and 1981 was derived from the Swedish Level of Living Survey (LNU). In our examination of individual-level life-course data, we found evidence that disadvantage was transmitted from parents to children and from childhood to adulthood, at least in the later-born cohort. The results of our cohort analyses suggest that childhood socioeconomic disadvantage was not related to health or health behaviours in the same way in the two cohorts. Specifically, the social patterning of both health and health behaviours was stronger in the later-born cohort. The health behaviours included in the analyses were thus not equally important mediators of the association between childhood socioeconomic disadvantage and midlife health in the cohorts. Because health behaviours in adolescence did not directly affect midlife health in either of the two cohorts, the results also suggest that it is the accumulated effects of health behaviours that have the greatest influence on midlife health.

National Category
Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-135347 (URN)
Available from: 2016-11-05 Created: 2016-11-05 Last updated: 2016-11-11Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

Expressions of context(357 kB)25 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 357 kBChecksum SHA-512
9aff459d40e9cdd8566960d36da2947d55b02f35fa38bdbf741812880df165227fa27c40251af80c71ff1b90d25971ccd22e6a20fe4c13710221b0a8e1742916
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Olsson, Gabriella
By organisation
Department of Sociology
Sociology

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 25 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 94 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link