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Feasibility, Acceptability, and Initial Effects of the Quiet Time transcendental meditation program: Evidence from two school pilots

Conti, G; Fearon, P; Oppedisano, V; Doyle, O; (2020) Feasibility, Acceptability, and Initial Effects of the Quiet Time transcendental meditation program: Evidence from two school pilots. PsyArXiv Preprints: Ithaca, NY, USA. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper assesses for the first time the feasibility, acceptability and preliminary impacts of Quiet Time (QT), a classroom-based Transcendental Meditation intervention that has been shown to be effective in other settings, in the UK and Ireland. The first study, implemented in a London primary school, included 89 children: those in sixth grade received the QT intervention, while those in fifth grade practiced meditation using the Headspace application. The second study, implemented in Donegal, included 100 fifth- and sixth-grade children from two schools: one received the QT intervention, the other served as a control. Feasibility outcomes included recruitment, programme delivery, and data collection at two timepoints. Acceptability outcomes included satisfaction reports. Outcomes at baseline and follow-up included measures of social skills and preferences, executive function, mental health and socio-emotional well-being, and academic achievement. Recruitment and retention rates were high in both pilots, and the results indicate that the intervention, when implemented with fidelity, is feasible and accepted by children, parents and teachers. Implementation fidelity was lower in the London pilot where delivery started later in the school year and the practice was affected by preparation for the Standard Assessment Tests. We find suggestive evidence that the intervention affected certain dimensions of children’s skills. The children who practiced QT showed improved working memory in both pilots. In the Irish pilot, pupils in the QT group had improved executive functioning; and girls showed improved emotional skills. These results suggest that QT may be feasibly delivered in school settings, it is well accepted, and may yield attention and emotional benefits, especially for girls, when implemented on a regular basis by trained teachers.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Feasibility, Acceptability, and Initial Effects of the Quiet Time transcendental meditation program: Evidence from two school pilots
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/fb4uk
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Transcendental Meditation, Pilot study, Primary school, Quiet Time, Socio-emotional skills
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10117382
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