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ERIC Number: EJ1085858
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Jan
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 96
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Developmental Change in Social Responsibility during Adolescence: An Ecological Perspective
Wray-Lake, Laura; Syvertsen, Amy K.; Flanagan, Constance A.
Developmental Psychology, v52 n1 p130-142 Jan 2016
Social responsibility can be defined as a set of prosocial values representing personal commitments to contribute to community and society. Little is known about developmental change--and predictors of that change--in social responsibility during adolescence. The present study used an accelerated longitudinal research design to investigate the developmental trajectory of social responsibility values and ecological assets across family, school, community, and peer settings that predict these values. Data come from a 3-year study of 3,683 U.S. adolescents enrolled in upper-level elementary, middle, and high schools in rural, semiurban, and urban communities. Social responsibility values significantly decreased from age 9 to 16 before leveling off in later adolescence. Family compassion messages and democratic climate, school solidarity, community connectedness, and trusted friendship, positively predicted within-person change in adolescents' social responsibility values. These findings held after accounting for other individual-level and demographic factors and provide support for the role of ecological assets in adolescents' social responsibility development. In addition, fair society beliefs and volunteer experience had positive between- and within-person associations with social responsibility values. The manuscript discusses theoretical and practical implications of the conclusion that declines in ecological assets may partly explain age-related declines in social responsibility values.
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Institute on Drug Abuse (DHHS/PHS)
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: RO1DA13434