Protective Factors Enhancing Prosocial Behavior and Preventing Internalizing and Externalizing Symptoms among Adolescents Living in Forster Care Homes


Maria E. Aguilar-Vafaie 1 , * , Mehrnoosh Roshani 1 , Hamidreza Hassanabadi 2

1 Department of Psychology, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Educational Research, Tehran University, Tehran, Iran

How to Cite: Aguilar-Vafaie M E, Roshani M, Hassanabadi H. Protective Factors Enhancing Prosocial Behavior and Preventing Internalizing and Externalizing Symptoms among Adolescents Living in Forster Care Homes, Iran J Psychiatry Behav Sci. 2014 ; 8(2):52-62.


Iranian Journal of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences: 8 (2); 52-62
Published Online: June 30, 2014
Article Type: Original Article
Received: January 10, 2013
Revised: May 15, 2013
Accepted: January 16, 2014




Objective: Based on Problem Based Theory, this study investigated a broad array of putative protective factors associated with psychopathological symptoms and prosodical behaviour.

Methods: Participants were 140 orphan adolescent girls and boys living in foster care homes in Tehran, chosen with convenience sampling procedures. Using a cross-sectional design this study examined the individual and interactive properties of protective factors in this high-risk population.

Results: Findings with theoretically derived multi-item subscales indicated a high degree of association specificity based on type of psychopathology and depending on gender. Results with the whole sample indicated that theoretically derived individual protective factor scales associations were obtained mainly for conduct problems and emotional symptoms, and with girls only.

Conclusion: The present study provides introductory information on the identification of protective factors that can be utilized in educational, interventional and preventive public health programs for this high-risk population. One innovative contribution of the present research is to provide an introductory validation of a theory-based model of adolescent protection and resilience, for which there is ample empirical support, in a high-risk population of Iranian adolescents living in foster homes centers in a metropolitan urban setting.

Declaration of interest: None.

Citation:Aguilar- Vafaie ME, Roshani M, Hassanabadi HR . Protective factors enhancing prosocial behavior and preventing internalizing and externalizing symptoms among adolescents living in forster care homes. Iran J Psychiatry Behav Sci 2014; 8(2): 52-62.


Orphan Prosocial Behavior Protective Factors Residential Foster Care Resilience

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