ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2012, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (9): 1426-1447.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2012.01426

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Approaches to Research on Resilience

XI Ju-Zhe;ZUO Zhi-Hong;WU Wei   

  1. (1 School of Psychology and Cognitive Science, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200062, China) (2 School of Preschool Education and Special Education, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200062, China) (3 Department of Psychology and Center for Research Methods and Data Analysis, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045-7556, USA)
  • Received:2011-11-07 Online:2012-09-15 Published:2012-09-15
  • Contact: ZUO Zhi-Hong

Abstract: Several approaches to resilience research have been developed since the starting of this scientific domain, including person-focused models, variable-focused models, pathway models and an integrated factor-process model. Person-focused models tend to identify resilient people and understand how resilience develops by comparing them to nonresilient ones who are not faring well in the face of adversity and to those who have not experienced any detrimental threats to their development. Variable-focused approaches focus on the relationships among indices of stress/adversity, the influencing factors of resilience and psychosocial functions. The purpose of variable-focused research is to capture the mechanism behind resilience development. Characterized by longitudinal design and analysis, pathway models try to disentangle how human adaptation systems operate and how resilience develops by focusing on change before and after the incidence of traumatic events or disasters. The integrated factor-process approach is on the basis of ecosystem theory. This approach emphasizes both the processes of resilience development and factors related to it. The integrated factor-process approach provides a more generic strategy for investigating resilience and interpreting the results. Each of the research approaches to resilience has its own strength and weakness. Familiarity with these approaches is crucial for a researcher to appropriately design the research, analyze the data and interpret the results, which would highly improve validity and efficiency of researches on resilience.

Key words: Resilience, approach, person-focused models, variable-focused models, pathway models, an integrated factor-process model