The contribution of the developmental assets framework to positive youth development theory and practice

Adv Child Dev Behav. 2011;41:197-230. doi: 10.1016/b978-0-12-386492-5.00008-7.


The framework of developmental assets posits a theoretically-based and research-grounded set of opportunities, experiences, and supports that are related to promoting school success, reducing risk behaviors, and increasing socially-valued outcomes including prosocial behavior, leadership, and resilience. A considerable body of literature on developmental assets has emerged in the last two decades, informing research and practice in education, social work, youth development, counseling, prevention, and community psychology. In addition to synthesizing this literature, this chapter discusses: the recent development of the Developmental Asset Profile, an instrument designed, in part, to assess change-over-time; the utilization of asset measures in international research; the expansion of the assets framework to early childhood and young adults; and new research using latent class analysis (LCA) to identify classes or subgroups of youth.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Achievement
  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Development*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Individuality
  • Leadership
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Personality Development*
  • Psychological Theory*
  • Psychology, Adolescent*
  • Resilience, Psychological
  • Risk-Taking
  • Social Adjustment
  • Social Environment
  • Social Identification
  • Social Support*
  • Socialization*
  • Young Adult