Come back soon to read more about recent publications generated by the Mind Body Laboratory!

Felver, J. C., Celis-DeHoyos, E., Tezanos, K., & Singh, N. (in press).  A systematic review of mindfulness-based interventions for youth in school settings.  Mindfulness  doi: 10.1007/s12671-015-0389-4.

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Abstract: There is a growing interest in the use of mindfulness-based interventions (MBI) on youth, which has recently expanded to include the study of students in school settings. This article systematically reviewed the existing literature of applied studies using MBI with students in school settings in order to identify limitations in the scientific literature and inform future research directions. Twenty-eight studies were selected for review and were coded across multiple domains, including methodologies employed, student characteristics, intervention characteristics, and outcome variables. Results quantitatively summarized the coded variables, and strengths and limitations in the literature were subsequently identified. We conclude with specific recommendations for future interventions scientists wishing to study the utility of MBI in school settings.

Singh, N. N., Lancioni, G. E., Karazsia, B. T., Felver, J. C., Winton, A.S. (in press).  Effects of Samatha Meditation on active academic engagement and math performance of students with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder.  Mindfulness  doi: 10.1007/s12671-015-0424-5.

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Abstract: Students with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often do not actively engage in academic instruction because they have difficulty in attending to task demands in the classroom. Without adequate intervention, this may result in poor academic outcomes for these students. In a multiple baseline design study, we taught four 5th-grade students Samatha meditation and assessed active engagement in math instruction and the percentage of math problems correctly solved during baseline, meditation training, and meditation practice phases. Results showed the students had varying but low percentages of intervals of active engagement in math instruction during baseline, but evidenced statistically significant increases from baseline to the meditation practice phase. Similarly, their low but varying percentages of math problems solved correctly during baseline showed statistically significant increases from baseline to the meditation practice phase. These results suggest that Samatha meditation may enhance cognitive processes in students with ADHD at a level to benefit them academically.

Felver, J. C., Tipsord, J. M., Morris, M. J., Racer, K. H., & Dishion, T. J. (in press).  The effects of mindfulness-based intervention on children’s attention regulation.  Journal of Attention Disorders  doi: 10.1177/1087054714548032.

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Abstract: This article describes results from a randomized clinical trial of a mindfulness-based intervention for parents and children, Mindful Family Stress Reduction, on a behavioral measure of attention in youths, the Attention Network Task (ANT). Method: Forty-one parent–child dyads were randomly assigned to either the mindfulness-based intervention condition or a wait-list control. School-age youths completed the ANT before and after the intervention. Results: Results demonstrate significant, medium-size (f2 = −.16) intervention effects to the conflict monitoring subsystem of the ANT such that those in the intervention condition decreased in conflict monitoring more than those in the wait-list control. Youths in the intervention condition also showed improvements in their orienting subsystem scores, compared with controls. Conclusion: Mindfulness-based interventions for youths have potential utility to improve attentional self-regulation, and future research should consider incorporating measures of attention into interventions that use mindfulness training.

Felver, J. C., Butzer, B., Olson, K., Smith, I., & Khalsa, S. B. (2015)..  Effects of a school-based yoga curriculum on mood state.  Contemporary School Psychology  19.  doi:10.1007/s40688-014-0031-9.

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Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to directly compare the acute effects of participating in a single yoga class versus a single standard physical education (PE) class on student mood. Forty-seven high school students completed self-report questionnaires assessing mood and affect immediately before and after participating in a single yoga class and a single PE class one week later. Data were analyzed using paired-samples t tests and Wilcoxon-signed ranks tests and by comparing effect sizes between the two conditions. Participants reported significantly greater decreases in anger, depression, and fatigue from before to after participating in yoga compared to PE. Significant reductions in negative affect occurred after yoga but not after PE; however, the changes were not significantly different between conditions. In addition, after participating in both yoga and PE, participants reported significant decreases in confusion and tension, with no significant difference between groups. Results suggest that school-based yoga may provide unique benefits for students above and beyond participation in PE. Future research should continue to elucidate the distinct psychological and physiological effects of participating in yoga compared to PE activities.

Felver, J. C., Frank, J. L., & McEachern, A. D. (2014)..  Effectiveness, acceptability, and feasibility of the Soles of the Feet mindfulness-based intervention with elementary school students.  Mindfulness  5.  doi:10.1007/s12671-013-0238-2.

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Abstract: Children with high rates of disruptive behavior in elementary school are at risk for future psychosocial difficulties. Professionals who work in today's schools are in need of effective interventions to reduce rates of disruptive behaviors in schools in order to ensure optimal outcomes for students. We detail a pilot study of a brief mindfulness-based intervention, Soles of the Feet (SOF), for elementary school students. Three non-disabled students with high rates of off-task behavior during general education periods were selected and taught the SOF intervention. SOF took place over the course of five 20–30-min sessions in a public school setting. Using a multiple-baseline single-subject study design, results obtained via direct observation of student behavior during general education instructional time in the classroom suggest that SOF may be an effective intervention to reduce off-task behavior and increase academically engaged behavior for behaviorally challenging students. Questionnaires administered to these students and their teachers suggest that SOF is socially valid, feasible, and acceptable intervention for use in public schools. Conclusions extend the research of the effectiveness of SOF, and suggest that SOF is an effective short-term, resource nonintensive, and socially valid intervention for use with typically developing students with disruptive behavior in a public school setting.

Felver, J. C., Doerner, E., Jones, J., Kaye, N. & Merrell, K. M. (2013)..  Mindfulness in school psychology: Applications for intervention and research.  Psychology in the Schools  50.  doi:10.1002/pits.21695.

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Abstract: Although the use of mindfulness is increasing in other areas of applied psychology, school psychology has yet to embrace it in practice. This article introduces school psychologists to the burgeoning field of mindfulness psychology and to the possibilities that it offers to their discipline. A background on the Western scientific study and application of mindfulness provides a theoretical foundation to those unfamiliar with the topic. We then discuss the application of mindfulness technologies to various forms of service provision in the professional practice of school psychology. The innovative and novel avenues that mindfulness psychology offers to psychological science and practice are described.

Felver, J. C. & Jennings, P. (in preparation).  Applications of mindfulness-based interventions in school settings: An introduction to the Mindfulness special issue. 

Felver, J. C. (in preparation).  Book Review: Mindfulness for Teachers: Simple Skills for Peace and Productivity in the Classroom.. 

Felver, J. C., Killam, M., Jones, R., McIntyre, L. L., & Race, K. (in preparation).  Treatment effects of a mindfulness-based intervention in a child psychiatric residential treatment facility: A pilot study.