Personal Resources in Recovery: A Quantitative Study of Resiliency, Grit, and Coping in Rehabilitation Following Acquired Brain Injury

Jen Todd Jones

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


This thesis explores the role of personal resources, including personality and
coping style, in rehabilitation following acquired brain injury (ABI).

The first chapter consists of a systematic literature review and meta-analysis
addressing the effectiveness of coping skills groups in improving coping in those with an ABI. Five articles were eligible for inclusion and comprised single group design and blind randomised controlled trials. A small, statistically non-significant effect size was found for improving coping following coping skills group interventions. This was the first meta-analytic review of its kind, finding no evidence to support the implementation of coping skills groups for improving coping in ABI. Some articles reported improvements across other physical, psychological, and social outcomes.

The second chapter reports empirical research investigating the influence of
personality traits on successful return to meaningful activity (RTMA) and return to work (RTW) following ABI. Twenty-six participants were prospectively recruited from a rural community brain injury rehabilitation service more than a year following ABI. Participants completed several questionnaires capturing resilience, grit, awareness, cognitive function, demographic, and vocational information. Only higher cognitive function scores predicted RTMA, but not RTW. This suggests that of the antecedent, mediating, and post-injury factors examined measures of grit and resiliency did not predict outcome following ABI after accounting for cognitive function. The implications and limitations of this finding are discussed.

The third chapter explores the outcome of the meta-analytic review and
empirical papers, discussing implications for theory, further research, and clinical practice. An explanatory model of recovery in ABI is used to contextualise the thesis, followed by a discussion of potential research regarding personality and attachment in recovery. Clinical implications of personality style and coping in individualised and systemic interventions are discussed.

The thesis concludes with a reflective piece exploring the personal and professional thoughts of the trainee.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Bangor University
  • Coetzer, Rudi, Supervisor, External person
Award date30 Jun 2018
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2018


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