Essay on The Overachievers: The Secret Lives of Driven Kids

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Every fall millions of American adolescents gear up to apply for the thousands of colleges and universities across the nation. For many students this process is a simple-natural progression through a linear educational track in which no extra preparation, beyond a paper application, is required. However, for many students college preparation can begin as early as conception. Alexandria Robbins follows the stories of nine students from Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, Maryland. Whitman is known for and could be summarized by a simple term in which Robbins’ book is also titled: Overachievers. The author explores the hectic nature of helicopter parenting, bureaucratic admission processes, the culture of Ivy (a term describing the upper …show more content…
Robbins concludes her bestseller with a seemingly rushed outline of best practices and recommendations for teachers, parents, students, educators and legislators.
The Science of Psychology The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) of Psychological Disorders IV revision describes a variety of conditions that the student participants may have or were diagnosed with. The students of Overachievers had a variety of psychological disturbances including, but not limited to, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Clinical Depression, Stress, Suicidal Ideation, and/or Chemical Abuse. This is not atypical of the average student not only in America but globally. A 1993 study by Lewishon, Hops, Roberts, Seely and Andrews examined the prevalence of Depression and other DSM-III-R disorders longitudinally in over 3,000 high school students. This study found that 9.6% met criteria for a current disorder, more than 33% have been previously diagnosed and 31.7% of which experienced a second diagnosis later on. In addition, the research by Lewishon et al. (1993), describes female students as having significantly higher rates of depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, and adjustment disorders while male students experienced higher rates of behaviorally disruptive disorders. While this particular research was conducted nearly two decades ago and under an old revision of the DSM, it runs particularly parallel with the accounts of

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