Adolescent Participation in Structured and Unstructured Activities: A Person-Oriented Analysis

Abstract

The current study used a person-oriented approach to examine the participation of adolescents in both constructive, organized activities as well as relaxed leisure activities. The goal of this research was to identify different profiles of involvement in activities and the relations to psychosocial indicators for these differing groups. Activity profiles were created using cluster analytic techniques for 918 adolescents' responses in 11 activity domains. The groups were found to be both statistically and substantively unique and consistent with findings from previous research. Further, the groups showed meaningful and consistent differences across a range of psychosocial indicators, including academic performance, problem behavior, and mental health. Results indicated that adolescents' activity involvement was related to their psychological and behavioral functioning and that the profiles of participation across activity settings provide a more holistic view of teens' choices than do single variable models.

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Correspondence to W. Todd Bartko.

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Bartko, W.T., Eccles, J.S. Adolescent Participation in Structured and Unstructured Activities: A Person-Oriented Analysis. Journal of Youth and Adolescence 32, 233–241 (2003). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1023056425648

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  • adolescence
  • activities
  • well-being
  • person-oriented