Creating a Context for Positive Character Development: Adult Leader Attributes in Cub Scouting
Abstract: Out-of-school time (OST) programs are a major influence on promoting
positive youth development in the lives of young people in the United States. Recent
research has attempted to understand how OST programs make significant and sustained change
in the members that they serve, especially in the area of character development. The Boy
Scouts of America (BSA) is an exemplar of a program... read morewhich has sought to promote leadership
and character development over its rich history of more than a century. Within the
structure of the BSA, adult leaders have been positioned as a key component to the delivery
of the program. In this study, the role of adult volunteers is focused upon with a specific
eye to attributes of the leaders. Using Multilevel Modeling, group association is examined
in its relationship with individual youth outcomes. Analyses show that no significant
relationship exists in the data to predict group differences in the outcome based on pack
membership. Interpretations for this finding are discussed as well as the limitations of
the data. Based on these interpretations, recommendations for policies and programs of the
BSA are offered.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Tufts University, 2016.
Submitted to the Dept. of Child Development.
Advisor: Richard Lerner.
Committee: George Scarlett, Jun Wang, and Trent Nichols.
Keyword: Developmental psychology.read less