TitleThe impact of age and type of intervention on youth violent behaviors.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsJagers, RJ, Morgan-Lopez, AA, Flay, BR
JournalThe journal of primary prevention
Date Published2009 Nov

This study compared the impact of the Aban Aya Youth Project (AAYP; Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine 158: 377-384, 2004) social development classroom curriculum (SDC), school/family/community (SC) intervention curriculum, and a health enhancement curriculum (HEC) attention placebo control on changes over time in violent behaviors among participating youth. Grade 5 pretest and grades 5-8 posttest data were used to investigate the possibility of differential intervention effects, especially the extent to which the SDC and SC interventions were differentially efficacious across age. Unlike most previous investigations of AAYP intervention effects, this study included youth who joined the study after baseline data collection in the outcome analyses. Findings indicated that, regardless of age level, the SDC limited the growth of violence of participating students when compared to students in the control condition. In the SC, however, reduction in the growth of violence emerged only among older participants. Importantly, this included joiners who received less exposure to the intervention. Findings for the SDC are consistent with recent meta-analyses of school based programs, whereas SC findings suggest that violence prevention curricula alone are not sufficient for highly mobile students and that interventions for such populations need to engage multiple social ecological systems. Editors' Strategic Implications: The authors present promising violence prevention findings, and they also provide important answers to dosage and developmental timing questions with their analyses of these longitudinal data.