Academic, social, and behavioral outcomes at age 12 of infants born preterm

Document Type


Date of Original Version



The effects of gradient levels of perinatal morbidity on school outcomes have been investigated at age 12 in four preterm groups, classified as healthy (no medical or neurological illness), medical morbidity, neurological morbidity, and small-for-gestational-age (SGA), and a full-term comparison group. Teachers report on academic competence, social skills, and problem behaviors. Data on school type, classroom setting, and school service use are gathered from school records. Preterm groups are found to be equivalent to full-term peers in social skills and problem behavior. Preterm groups with neurological and SGA morbidity have the lowest academic competence scores. Unexpectedly, preterm infants with medical morbidity have higher academic competence scores compared with the other preterm groups. School service use increases with greater perinatal morbidity and is contingent on multiple rather than single indicators of perinatal morbidity. Continued monitoring of preterm infants through early adolescence will ensure that appropriate school services and resources are available to maximize their school success. © 2009 The Author(s).

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Western Journal of Nursing Research