Measuring Resilience

How do you measure resilience in a digital age?

Evidence-based with Measurable Outcomes

The wellbeing and resilience of young people is a major issue across the world. Increasing numbers of teenagers being exposed to more and more complex risks and stresses than in the past, their lives governed by factors that previous generations were not exposed to, which has led to greater levels of anxiety and depression.

The key issue is HOW to assess each child in a consistent and objective manner in order to provide a true measure of their “resilience.” Our ground breaking app, APPA provides the platform to assess the resilience of young people using digital technology they can relate to. APPA Scotland, working with a leader in the field of resilience in young people, Dr. Michael Ungar (of Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia) has embodied his resilience research in APPA.

For the first time, schools have the capability to assess resilience and wellbeing not based simply on qualitative data such as “how do you feel” but based on quantitative data that has been validated in a 10-year study costing over CAD 1million.

APPA – The Process

Mobile App – APPA (Adaptive Psychological Profiling Application) is an app on a mobile device (Mobile, iPad, Tablet) that assesses a young person’s ability to overcome challenges in times of trouble.


Assessment – When your child uses APPA they will meet Alex, an avatar who will guide them through the app and be their personal resilience coach. Alex will ask them questions about their life, such as their personal strengths, difficulties, community, school, family, and friends.


Resilience Report – Once your child has answered all of Alex’s questions, APPA will generate a report showing how resilient your child is on 11 Indicators of Wellbeing along with suggested actions to improve their resilience :

  • Consequences
  • Parent/Child Relationship
  • Power of Identity
  • Positive Thinking
  • Physical Health
  • Structure
  • Strong Relationships
  • Sense of Control
  • Sense of Belonging
  • Safety and Support
  • Rights and Responsibilities


Action Plan – APPA also provides a template for educators and mental health professionals to produce Action Plans to ensure your child develops their resilience to its fullest potential.

Helpful Hints – Over the following two months, Alex will send your child some ‘helpful hints’ or suggestions on how to improve their wellbeing around the following :

  • Boundaries
  • Rules
  • Being Loved
  • Feeling Special
  • Control of Life
  • Fitting in
  • Being Treated Fairly
  • Safety
  • Thinking Positively

Alex will encourage them to seek help from a trusted adult when it becomes apparent there is an area in their life that they need additional support. The app will also provide your child with contacts tailored to their school and community giving them access to support channels.


Repeat – After a few months, Alex will ask your child some of the same questions again and compare their results over time to see if they have become more resilient. Alex will also keep sending them ‘helpful hints,’ focusing on areas that they need the most help.

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The first factor in validation shows that there is a high correlation between the EPOCH scale and APPA... only four more to be done and the app will be validated for use in schools... ... See MoreSee Less

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Happy New APPA Scotland we wish you great and prosperous year ahead ... See MoreSee Less

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Finished the Northfield trial yesterday and re-engaged with Perth Academy. Today is Falkirk High School and on Monday we start trials in Oriel High School, Crawley. We’ll have enough results for a preliminary write up by Christmas. ... See MoreSee Less

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Final trials starting again in Northfield Academy. Full validation, here we come! ... See MoreSee Less

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Little 3D printed Alexes...really cute, especially the wee totty baby one ... See MoreSee Less

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