, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 147-167

Promoting Successful Youth Mentoring Relationships: A Preliminary Screening Questionnaire

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Abstract

Youth mentoring programs are an increasingly popular intervention, and although successful mentoring relationships can promote a range of positive developmental outcomes, relationships that fail can lead to decrements in a youth’s functioning and self-esteem. The present research develops and validates a youth mentoring relationship quality inventory, based on data from a national evaluation of Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) mentoring programs (N = 347 youth). This tool can be administered to adolescents who have been assigned mentors in order to assess the quality of the relationship as it is forming and to identify dyads that may need additional support before those relationships fail. Implications of such a tool for mentoring interventions and research are discussed.

Editors’ Strategic Implications: Reliability and validity data are presented for a measure of youth’s perceptions of the quality of their mentoring relationship. This measure shows promise as a tool for research and evaluation of a wide array of mentoring programs due to its brevity, demonstrated psychometrics, and straightforward focus on the mentoring relationship.