Evaluating Positive Youth Development Intervention Programs Promoting Character Virtues Among Ugandan Youth Living in Poverty: Innovations using Idiographic Methods and Measures​

TWCF0516

Director: Alistair T. R. Sim

Institution: Compassion International

Compassion International (CI) is a faith-based and child-focused organization aimed at promoting holistic child development. CI seeks to retool its approach to interventions in Africa, particularly through more intentional capacity building for evidence-informed programming.

This GICD project will contribute to the "reset" by capitalizing on theoretical and methodological advances in developmental science. Directed by Alistair T. R. Sim, the project aims to develop new tools, build the local expertise needed to measure character virtue development (CVD), and evaluate CI's intervention programs in Africa. Building on the Compassion International Study of Positive Youth Development—a practice-research partnership between CI, Tufts University, Boston College, and Fuller Theological Seminary—researchers will evaluate CVD in Ugandan youth.

Whereas most evaluations of CVD programs focus on variables assessed across youth, this project will focus on measuring critical person-specific change across time and place. This approach uses variable-centered assessments and idiographic "burst" design measurements, combined with a subsample across one hundred measurement occasions.

The research will inform CI’s goal of transforming its programs in Africa with evidence-based approaches to CVD change, while also building the expertise of talented Uganda-based staff. By moving beyond conventional approaches to program evaluation, findings also have the potential to revolutionize youth development programs worldwide.

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