ERIC Number: EJ699148
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Mar-22
Reference Count: 35
Relational and Purpose Development in Youth Offenders
Coll, Kenneth M.; Thobro, Patti; Haas, Robin
Journal of Humanistic Counseling, Education and Development, v43 n1 p41 Spr 2004
This study explored which risk factors are associated with degrees of relational and purpose development in youth offenders. Results indicate that those with the poorest development particularly struggled with substance abuse, lack of family support, and risky behaviors to self. Several treatment recommendations and clinical strategies are included. Data used in this study were collected from all adolescents who stayed at a residential treatment facility in the rural Rocky Mountain region of the United States for at least 1 month during a 1-year period. The participants, ages 13 to 18, were court mandated for a variety of offenses ranging from running away to homicide. Of the participants, 35% were female and 65% were male. The total sample of residents receiving initial psychosocial development testing over a 1-year period was 86 (30 girls, 56 boys). Of the sample, 90% were Caucasian, 5% were Hispanic, and 5% were African American. The average age was 14.7 years, with a range of 13 to 18 years. The adolescent residential treatment site used in this investigation is a 40-bed facility with an on-site school. The Measure of Psychosocial Development (MPD) was used to assess levels of psychosocial development related to purpose and relationships. For sense of purpose, almost three quarters of the residents showed poor development in ego integrity compared with their norm group (78% of the residents scored below the norm, and 42% scored below the 10th percentile). Of the residents, 82% scored above the norm in despair, with 37% scoring above the 90th percentile. According to the MPD, these scores indicate a basic lack of purpose not only about their lives but also about life and humankind in general, being dissatisfied with their lives and accomplishments to date, and general perception that their lives have been filled with misdirected energies and lost opportunities.
Descriptors: Psychosocial Development, Adolescents, Social Isolation, Intimacy, Interpersonal Relationship, Self Concept, Counseling Techniques, Personality Assessment, Residential Institutions, Risk
American Counseling Association, 5999 Stevenson Ave., Alexandria, VA 22304. Web site: http://www.counseling.org.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States