School Phobia in Eleven to Sixteen Year Olds: A Descriptive Study of School Phobic Types and Personality in a Psychiatric Outpatient Group
Date of Award
Dissertation - Restricted
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Efforts to aid and counsel emotionally disturbed adolescents are at once difficult and frustrating, rewarding and exciting. Pre-teens and teenagers with a keen sense for detecting hypocrises [sic] and human weaknesses in the adult world, will seldom hesitate to practice their intuitive cunning in their psychotherapeutic relationships. At the same time, there is something especially gratifying in being able to play a part in helping these half children - half adults to continue their developmental progression. To do this effectively requires all the technical know-how one can muster in addition to appropriate temperament and empathic capacity.
This study was initiated in the interest of developing further information for working with a therapeutically resistive and socially troublesome emotional disorder--school phobia--as it affects youngsters between eleven and sixteen years of age. Patients who manifest this condition, defined as "a persistent, irrational dread of the school situation resulting in a partial or total inability and thus refusal to go to school," present both internal conflict which requires resolution and very troublesome, externalized behavioral management problems. As past research regarding school phobia has concentrated on younger patient .groups, the portent of this investigation was to evaluate the case records of a pre-teen - teenage psychiatric outpatient group in order to gain further understanding of the epidemiological, symptomatic, and etiological characteristics of the disorder when it is manifest between eleven and sixteen years of age.