Positive Youth Development in the United States: Research Findings on Evaluations of Positive Youth Development Programs. CHAPTER FOUR: Summary and Conclusions


The main focus of this chapter is to summarize program and evaluation characteristics of well-evaluated programs (n=25). First, however, we will summarize the reasons that programs or evaluations were excluded from the well-evaluated and effective category.

The second section presents the results of our analysis in summary form. The 25 effective programs are analyzed by constructs, domains, strategies, and other elements of successful youth development programs. When appropriate, we compare these to the other 44 evaluated programs to see in what ways strongly evaluated programs that do produce positive effects are different from the field of other evaluated positive youth development programs.

The third section presents the findings on methodological issues surrounding positive youth development programs. This section covers how evaluations of positive youth development programs addressed research design, statistical methods, attrition, outcome measures, and other important aspects of assessment technology.

Finally we present conclusions and comments concerning future directions for the field, for both positive youth development interventions and for the evaluations that they use.