The impact of health and health behaviours on educational outcomes in high-income countries:
a review of the evidence
WHO Regional Office for
Available online PDF [48p.] at: http://bit.ly/giHFXO
“…..This study aims to systematically review the current knowledge of the effect that different health conditions and unhealthy behaviours can have on educational outcomes in the context of rich countries. Specifically, we examine research on the following questions.
• Does poor health during childhood or adolescence have a significant impact on educational achievement or performance?
• Does the engagement of children and adolescents in unhealthy behaviours determine their educational attainment and academic performance?
As it turns out, although these questions have not been a major research focus, the evidence that does exist offers a lot to suggest a causal contribution of health to various educational outcomes. While gaps in the research do remain, its results already bear relevant policy implications both for the wider importance of child health in rich countries (extending beyond the health benefits per se) and for the ways in which educational outcomes might be improved.
The publication is structured as follows.
Section 2 we review briefly some of the evidence and hypotheses behind the linkage between health and education in general.
Section 3 presents a conceptual framework to organize the different ways in which health may impact education.
Section 4 describes the literature search methodology.
Section 5 presents the core results of the literature review, first in terms of basic summary statistics and second in a more detailed, synthesis format. The final section draws together our conclusions…..”
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