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Journal Article


Schmidt AT, Hanten GR, Orsten KD, Newsome MR. J. Juv. Justice 2013; 2(2): 63-75.


(Copyright © 2013, In Public Domain (U.S. Department of Justice OJJDP), Publisher CSR)






There is scant evidence regarding the relationship between cognitive variables and social factors influencing the success of community-based programs intended to foster positive youth development. This preliminary study examines the relationship among individual, community/contextual, and parenting factors, all of which have been associated with positive outcomes, and decision making in two groups of underprivileged youth. Participants for this preliminary study were drawn from two locations: the Juvenile Justice Diversion program (JJ) in Harris County, Texas, and Youth Advocates (YA), a community-based, peer-to-peer youth-mentoring organization. Participants were at-risk youth between the ages of 13 and 19 who were living in their communities. These youth were evaluated using the Child and Youth Resilience Measure (CYRM-28), a questionnaire that indexes developmental assets associated with resilience, and the Columbia Card Task (CCT), a task that measures affective and deliberative decision making. We found group differences in the relation between decision-making skills and developmental assets. For those in the YA group, higher scores on the CYRM-28 were related to superior decision making; for youth in the JJ group, lower scores on the CYRM-28 were related to better decision making. Our results seem to indicate differences in the psychosocial environments of the two groups, such as the greater influence of anti-social peers among youth in the JJ group. These findings provide a potential direction for future research and may have implications for evaluating the effectiveness of adolescent intervention programs.

KEYWORDS: youth, adolescent development, peer effects, family effects, delinquency prevention, resilience, decision making, juvenile justice

Language: en


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