Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair

Dr. Jan Findlay

Clinical Mentor

Dr. Julie Cerel

Committee Member

Dr. Chizimuzo Okoli


PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to evaluate student feedback of the 2015 Lifelines Suicide Prevention Program at Jessie Clark Middle School. Student feedback was examined by assessing students’ knowledge of suicide, attitudes toward suicide, knowledge of when and from whom to seek help if feeling suicidal or told by a friend that they are suicidal, and impressions of the educational presentation following participation in the Lifelines Suicide Prevention Program.

METHODS: In this secondary analysis, anonymous student responses (N=269) from a 2015 middle school survey were examined by using a mixed method design with the quantitative study measures being examined by summary scores. School grade and teams were determined using frequencies. Summary scores of each of the domains of the evaluation questions were computed and described using means with standard deviations and medians. Chi-square analyses were performed to determine differences in the individual item evaluation questions by school grade and team membership. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to determine differences in the summary scores of the evaluation questions by school grade and team membership. For the qualitative portion, transcripts of student comments were read and reviewed several times by the author, then narrative data were coded to identify themes related to participant perceptions about the program.

RESULTS: There were differences between grades in individual knowledge questions as well as the mean knowledge score. Eighth graders were significantly more likely to correctly answer questions about the relationship of depression and suicide (p=0.010). However, 7th graders had significantly higher scores on use of the STOP sign logo (p=0.001). There were differences in scores between grades in individual attitude questions but not in the mean attitude score. Eighth graders were significantly more likely to answer correctly the question about the importance of yearly suicide prevention (p=0.007). There were differences in scores between grades in individual intention questions but not in the mean intention score. Seventh graders’ responses trended toward significance when endorsing having a trusted adult (p=0.053). Overall satisfaction scores were high, however 6th graders found the Lifelines videos depicting different at-risk scenarios more difficult to watch.

CONCLUSION: Almost all (98.5%) students understood the seriousness of suicide and understood the risk factors of suicide (96.2%) following the Lifelines Suicide Prevention program. This study also found that as age increased, so did mental health literacy. Overall, students were satisfied with the presenter and the presentation of the program. Students perceived the Lifelines Suicide Prevention program to be relevant to themselves, their peers and to others in general. However, younger students may need adaptations to the program including a video that more closely reflects their developmental stage. An updated version of the videos may also improve the relatability of the content. In addition, results suggested that emphasis on trust-building between staff and students is an important factor in facilitation of open communication, which can empower students and suicidal peers to seek assistance. Finally, it is important to incorporate anti-stigma interventions to reduce students’ prejudices regarding mental illness and suicide, which may prevent them from seeking help for themselves or a peer.