reinforced sense of self

psychosoziales Befinden

Students who enter school with articulated ideas of who they are and who they want to become, are able to choose to do service which forces them to rise to the occasion. Once they do such service, they find that they can accomplish it well, so they do more of it. Thus, in a mechanism suggesting self-fulfilling prophecy, these students maintain clear identities by seeking and accepting challenges to the self. Since they do this by working in the world outside of school with strangers who have problems, their sense of self is reinforced through real accomplishments in the face of difficulty.

Beschreibung der Aktivität

gemeindebezogene/ kommunale Jugendarbeit
community based youth work done by students in two high schools included in the evaluation
Both schools had a requirement that students do 12 or more hours of service every year, but student could choose the kinds of service they wanted to do: raise money for causes, tutor classmates, work at soup kitchens feeding the homeless.
USA
2 years
high school students
teilnehmende Kinder und Jugendliche
freiwillig engagierte Jugendliche

Evaluierung der Aktivität

Quantitative Fragebogenerhebung (schriftlich/offline)
The data for this study come from students in two Catholic high schools: yearly assessment for four years; survey 8 years after graduating from high school.
students' experiences of service
First study: "I felt I made a contribution to the organization" [through which I did service]; "I discovered things about myself I never knew I could do"; Second survey: "Voted in any election during the prior two years (1998-2000)"; "Done civic or voluntary service during the previous 12 months".
1-5 scale
The youth in this study came from a nationally representative sample of 25,000 students who were in high school from 1989-1992; 12,144 youth were surveyed in 2000, 8 years after they had graduated from high school
1995 - 1999