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Diffusion of a Developmental Asset-Building Initiative in Public Schools

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Objective: To identify characteristics that distinguish between school personnel who do and do not adopt asset-building behaviors in the formative stage of a countywide initiative. Methods: An anonymous questionnaire, assessing constructs from diffusion of innovation and social cognitive theories, was administered to 467 adult personnel in 3 school districts. Results: Discriminant analysis revealed that implementation of asset building was most closely related to rating the initiative high on trialability, relative advantage, compatibility, and observability and low on complexity. Conclusions: Efforts to implement asset-building initiatives need to assess perceptions of adult personnel and should not assume that positive youth development will be widely supported in schools.
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Keywords: diffusion of innovation; positive youth development; social cognitive theory

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Mahoney Consulting Group, Wadsworth, OH. 2: Health Promotion, Kent State University, Kent, OH.

Publication date: 2003-05-01

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

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