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Prevention and treatment of conduct problems

Main research areas

  • The study of child and adolescent development and the associated factors with emotional and behavioural problems in different evolutionary periods.
  • Risk assessment of antisocial behaviour in adolescence.
  • Risk assessment of traffic offending behaviour.
  • Prevention of problem behaviour and substance use.

The research trajectory of the group (previously, under the label UDIPRE) began in the late 80’s with the development of several studies related to juvenile delinquency, substance use and associated factors. Specifically, the longitudinal and preventive nature characterize the studies carried out by the group. The study on the risk factors of delinquency, behavioural problems and substance consumption favoured the development, implementation and evaluation of different prevention programmes.

On the one hand, the “Building Health” programme, aimed at the prevention of drug consumption in adolescence and, on the other, the “EmPeCemos: Emotions, Thoughts and Behaviours for a healthy development”, focused on the prevention of early-onset behavioural problems. In addition, the collaboration with the University of Arizona (United States) has allowed the adaptation of the “Keepin’it REAL” programme to the Spanish context, aimed at the prevention of substance use and other risky behaviours in early adolescence.

Current research lines

Among the current research lines is the “Longitudinal Study for a Healthy Childhood” (ELISA), aimed at the assessment of psychosocial, emotional and behavioural development and associated factors, in a sample of more than 2500 Galician pre-schoolers. On the other hand, the “Juvenile offender’s risk assessment” (VRAI), aimed at the study of adolescent antisocial behaviour and different risk and protective factors, along with the adaptation and validation of a risk assessment tool in this population. All this from a preventive perspective which would favour the adaptation of intervention strategies to different risk profiles.

The research carried out by the group in this field was possible due to the aid of a considerable number of research projects, granted by different autonomous, state and international institutions in various competitive calls, in addition to collaboration with different agents and entities that facilitated their development.