Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (MSW)


Social Work

First Advisor

Dr. Laura Boisen

Second Advisor

Barb Mersy

Third Advisor

Francine Chakolis


This study examined several risk and resilience factors associated with sexual intercourse, gang involvement, and alcohol and drug use among 332 urban culturally diverse adolescents aged 12-16 years. In general different patterns of risk and resilience factors were found to predict the three problem behaviors. Delinquency was the only factor that was significantly linked to sexual intercourse, gang involvement, and substance use.

Discriminant analyses supported that delinquency was differentially associated with low problem vs. high problem urban adolescents. In addition when compared to the high problem urban youth the resilient youth tended to have higher academic competence and intact two parent families and were less likely to be involved in a steady relationship.

The results support an ecological multidimensional approach to understanding problem behaviors in urban adolescents. Prevention and intervention approaches based on the study's findings are discussed.


SC 11.MSW.2000.Crosby.SL

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