(1/418) Measuring intermediate outcomes of violence prevention programs targeting African-American male youth: an exploratory assessment of the psychometric properties of six psychosocial measures.

This study examined the psychometric properties of six psychosocial measures that may be useful indicators of intermediate outcomes of violence prevention programs targeting African-American male youth. Baseline and 6 month follow-up survey data are used from 223 African-American male 12-16 year olds participating in a violence prevention program evaluation study. The constructs of interest are beliefs supporting aggression, aggressive conflict-resolution style, hostility, ethnic identity, self-esteem and hopelessness. Each construct is measured as a multi-item scale. Exploratory factor analysis results provided limited support for the unidimensionality of these scales, thus suggesting that further scale development is warranted. Reliability coefficients for the scales ranged from 0.55 to 0.80. Bivariate analyses with baseline data indicate that all six measures have construct and criterion-related validity, as they are associated with each other and with four behavioral criteria in the expected directions. Predictive validity was also demonstrated for beliefs supporting aggression, aggressive conflict-resolution style, hostility and hopelessness which were associated with weapon-carrying behaviors measured in the 6 month follow-up survey both before and after controlling for corresponding behaviors measured in the baseline survey.  (+info)

(2/418) A method in search of a theory: peer education and health promotion.

Peer education has grown in popularity and practice in recent years in the field of health promotion. However, advocates of peer education rarely make reference to theories in their rationale for particular projects. In this paper the authors review a selection of commonly cited theories, and examine to what extent they have value and relevance to peer education in health promotion. Beginning from an identification of 10 claims made for peer education, each theory is examined in terms of the scope of the theory and evidence to support it in practice. The authors conclude that, whilst most theories have something to offer towards an explanation of why peer education might be effective, most theories are limited in scope and there is little empirical evidence in health promotion practice to support them. Peer education would seem to be a method in search of a theory rather than the application of theory to practice.  (+info)

(3/418) Social capital and self-rated health: a contextual analysis.

OBJECTIVES: Social capital consists of features of social organization--such as trust between citizens, norms of reciprocity, and group membership--that facilitate collective action. This article reports a contextual analysis of social capital and individual self-rated health, with adjustment for individual household income, health behaviors, and other covariates. METHODS: Self-rated health ("Is your overall health excellent, very good, good, fair, or poor?") was assessed among 167,259 individuals residing in 39 US states, sampled by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Social capital indicators, aggregated to the state level, were obtained from the General Social Surveys. RESULTS: Individual-level factors (e.g., low income, low education, smoking) were strongly associated with self-rated poor health. However, even after adjustment for these proximal variables, a contextual effect of low social capital on risk of self-rated poor health was found. For example, the odds ratio for fair or poor health associated with living in areas with the lowest levels of social trust was 1.41 (95% confidence interval = 1.33, 1.50) compared with living in high-trust states. CONCLUSIONS: These results extend previous findings on the health advantages stemming from social capital.  (+info)

(4/418) Student-school bonding and adolescent problem behavior.

Adolescent problem behavior, including substance use, school misconduct and delinquency, is a national concern. Implicit in the concept of middle school is the recognition that students who develop positive social bonds with their school are more likely to perform well academically, and refrain from misconduct and other antisocial behavior. However, little scientific attention has been given to the complex interactions between middle school students and the school environment. Prior to implementing a middle school problem behavior prevention program we conducted a survey in the seven middle schools in one US school district. Out of 4668 grade 6-8 students enrolled, 4263 (91.3%) completed the survey. Student-school bonding was positively correlated with school adjustment (r = 0.49) and perceived school climate (r = 0.77), but inversely correlated with problem behavior (r = -0.39 to -0.43). Problem behavior was significantly higher (P < 0.001) among males than females and among students in higher grades. Conversely, school bonding, climate and adjustment were significantly higher (P < 0.001) among females than males, but declined significantly from one grade to the next. The data support the conclusion that school bonding is associated with problem behavior. We describe the development of a multiple-component intervention in middle schools designed to increase student-school bonding and prevent problem behavior.  (+info)

(5/418) Identity in adolescent survivors of childhood cancer.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate identify formation among adolescent survivors of childhood cancer. Family functioning, perceived emotional support from family and peers, life stress, and anxiety produced by the cancer experience also were examined as they influenced identity development. METHOD: Participants were 52 adolescent survivors and their mothers recruited from a medical center and 42 healthy adolescent counterparts and their mothers recruited from the community. RESULTS: A greater frequency of survivors than their healthy peers was found within the foreclosed identity status. Factors associated with the foreclosed identity status included the cancer diagnosis, symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and family functioning characterized by greater levels of conflict. CONCLUSIONS: Data were interpreted to suggest that the foreclosed identity status may serve a protective function in assisting survivors to cope with the stressors of the cancer experience.  (+info)

(6/418) Cross-cultural analysis of eventfulness in the lives of people with schizophrenia.

Eventfulness as a strategy for creating a meaningful life is an important component of the attempts of people with schizophrenia to present a positive self-image. This study of patients with schizophrenia shows that the phenomenon of creating eventfulness through normalcy accounts is relevant cross-culturally, with common themes occurring in the speech of participants from Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. Both patient (n = 23) and nonpatient (n = 27) participants from these two countries were interviewed as part of a larger research project. Conversational speech of participants was analyzed for passages that could be defined as normalcy accounts. A total of 61 such accounts were obtained from the conversational samples. The three most common themes of normalcy accounts (educational achievement and goals, national pride, and travel) were characteristic of the self-presentation of nonpatient subjects as well as patients with schizophrenia. Normalcy themes varied slightly depending on nationality and patient or nonpatient status. The similarity of both normalcy account themes and presentation, however, was remarkably consistent across cultures.  (+info)

(7/418) Direct and moderating effects of community context on the psychological well-being of African American women.

The effects of community characteristics on well-being were examined among 709 African American women. Direct and moderating effects of neighborhood characteristics on distress were tested. Aggregate-level ratings of neighborhood cohesion and disorder were significantly related to distress, although the relation between cohesion and distress became nonsignificant when individual risk factors were statistically controlled. Aggregate-level neighborhood variables interacted significantly with individual risk and resource variables in the prediction of distress, consistent with trait-situation interaction theories (D. Magnusson & N. S. Endler, 1977). Community cohesion intensified the benefits of a positive life outlook. Community disorder intensified both the benefits of personal resources and the detrimental effects of personal risk factors. Results showed evidence of resilience among African American women.  (+info)

(8/418) Socioeconomic inequality in voting participation and self-rated health.

OBJECTIVES: This study tested the hypothesis that disparities in political participation across socioeconomic status affect health. Specifically, the association of voting inequality at the state level with individual self-rated health was examined. METHODS: A multilevel study of 279,066 respondents to the Current Population Survey (CPS) was conducted. State-level inequality in voting turnout by socioeconomic status (family income and educational attainment) was derived from November CPS data for 1990, 1992, 1994, and 1996. RESULTS: Individuals living in the states with the highest voting inequality had an odds ratio of fair/poor self-rated health of 1.43 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.22, 1.68) compared with individuals living in the states with the lowest voting inequality. This odds ratio decreased to 1.34 (95% CI = 1.14, 1.56) when state income inequality was added and to 1.27 (95% CI = 1.10, 1.45) when state median income was included. The deleterious effect of low individual household income on self-rated health was most pronounced among states with the greatest voting and income inequality. CONCLUSIONS: Socioeconomic inequality in political participation (as measured by voter turnout) is associated with poor self-rated health, independently of both income inequality and state median household income.  (+info)