Effectiveness of the program Super Skills for Life in reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression in young Spanish children

Iván Fernández-Martínez, Alexandra Morales, José P. Espada, Cecilia Essau, Mireia Orgilés

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Super Skills for Life (SSL) is a transdiagnostic prevention program designed for children with anxiety and depressive symptoms based on cognitive-behavioral therapy. This study is a trial of the efficacy of the SSL program to reduce anxiety and depression symptoms in a representative sample of Spanish children aged 6 to 8. Method: This cluster randomized controlled trial involved 123 Spanish speaking children recruited from 10 schools. Schools were the unit of randomization, and were randomly assigned to one of two experimental conditions: intervention group (SSL) and waiting list control (WLC) group. Assessments were conducted before and after the 8-week intervention. Results: Generalized estimating equations showed that, compared with WLC, the intervention significantly reduced emotional symptoms of anxiety and depression. Significant improvements were also found in specific symptoms of anxiety disorders, and in the interference of anxiety in the child´s life. Conclusions: The findings of this study provide initial support for the immediate effects of SSL, suggesting that it is a valuable resource for the early reduction of anxiety and depressive symptoms in young Spanish-speaking children.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-304
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2019


  • Anxiety, depression, children, Super Skills for Life, transdiagnostic program

Cite this