Part II, which includes Chapters 5 and 6, reviews what the committee found out about community programs themselves. Chapter 5 examines the ways in which programs incorporate features of positive developmental settings and provide opportunities for young people to acquire the personal and social assets characteristic of positive youth development. To do this, we map the features of positive developmental settings against a variety of programs that have been studied with nonexperimental evaluation methods and then draw conclusions about the program practices that are linked empirically to positive indicators of adolescent development. Chapter 6 reviews the evidence of effective program practices from experimental evaluations of community programs for youth. We end this chapter by mapping what we learned from experimental program evaluations onto the features of positive developmental settings outlined in Chapter 4.
Part III, which includes Chapters 7 and 8, examines the role for evaluation and social indicator data in thinking about community programs for youth in the future. Chapter 7 discusses the various methods and tools available to evaluate youth programs and generate new information about them. Chapter 8 explores existing social indicators and data instruments that help elucidate the attributes of program participants. We also suggest other information and tools needed in order to better understand young people and evaluate these programs.
Finally, Part IV examines the intersection among research, policy, and practice for community programs for youth. In Chapter 9 we examine existing and anticipated policy and system-level supports and barriers. In the final chapter, Chapter 10, we summarize the committee’s conclusions and recommendations that span the areas of practice and policy and evaluation, research, and data collection.