The social development model: An integrated approach to delinquency prevention
- Cite this article as:
- Hawkins, J.D. & Weis, J.G. J Primary Prevent (1985) 6: 73. doi:10.1007/BF01325432
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This paper describes a comprehensive developmental approach to preventing youth crime based on the social development model, an integration of social control theory and social learning theory. The model asserts that the most important units of socialization, family, schools, peers, and community, influence behavior sequentially. Positive socialization is achieved when youths have the opportunity within each unit to be involved in conforming activities, when they develop skills necessary to be successfully involved, and when those with whom they interact consistently reward desired behaviors. These conditions should increase attachment to others, commitment to conforming behavior, and belief in the conventional order. These social bonds to conventional society inhibit association with delinquent pers and, in turn, prevent delinquent behavior. The paper describes prevention approaches consistent with the model. Rigorous evaluation of the delinquency prevention effects of these interventions is needed.