The Impact of Peer Mediation on Student Mediators

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Laehn, Lisa
Social and Behavioral Sciences; Social Work
thesis / dissertation description
This qualitative study sought to expand the current knowledge of how student mediators view themselves and how their involvement in a peer mediation program impacted them. Twenty-three students, from three different elementary schools in the Elk River School System, were individually interviewed. All subjects were between the ages of 10-13, were currently involved in a peer mediation program, and had been involved for at least six months The semi-structured interviews focused on subjects' views of the impact involvement in a peer mediation program had on their self-esteem, leadership skills, relationship skills, and school attitudes. Common themes addressed in the data include: a desire to help others as the driving factor for most students' involvement in peer mediation, improved ability to problem solve, fun in peer mediation, the impact of peer mediation on schools, drawbacks of mediation, and personal gains by mediators such as in relationships or self-esteem. The implications of this research for social workers along with future research ideas are discussed as well as limitations of this study.