Measuring Cortisol in the Classroom with School-Aged Children—A Systematic Review and Recommendations

Dimolareva, Mirena and Gee, Nancy and Pfeffer, Karen and Marechal, Laetitia and Pennington, Kyla and Meints, Kerstin (2018) Measuring Cortisol in the Classroom with School-Aged Children—A Systematic Review and Recommendations. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15 (5). p. 1025. ISSN 1661-7827

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051025

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Measuring Cortisol in the Classroom with School-Aged Children—A Systematic Review and Recommendations
Dimolareva, M.; Gee, N.R.; Pfeffer, K.; Maréchal, L.; Pennington, K.; Meints, K. Measuring Cortisol in the Classroom with School-Aged Children—A Systematic Review and Recommendations. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1025. Available online from https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15051025
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Abstract

The collection of salivary cortisol has been chosen as one of the least intrusive, easiest
to collect, analyze, and store methods of obtaining information on physiological changes. It is,
however, not clear what the best practice is when collecting salivary cortisol from children within the
school setting. The aim of this systematic review is to evaluate the feasibility of cortisol collection
in schools for future research and to make recommendations for best practice. The review included
25 peer-reviewed articles from seven databases. The hypotheses of the included studies vary, but they
all use cortisol as a diurnal, baseline, or acute measure, or to measure the effect of an intervention.
Two methods of salivary cortisol collection were preferred by most of the research, i.e., passive
drool or cotton Salivettes. The review has concluded that cortisol is a physiological marker that
can be successfully measured in school-based research. However, there are discrepancies across
studies when evaluating the collection guidelines, protocols, and instructions to participants as
well as transparency of the success rate of obtaining all samples. Recommendations are made for
future research to address and avoid such discrepancies and improve cross-study comparisons by
implementing standard protocol guidelines.

Keywords:Children, Saliva Cortisol
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C141 Developmental Biology
C Biological Sciences > C841 Health Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C820 Developmental Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:32298
Deposited On:26 Jun 2018 21:30

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