“Discovering” critical factors for youth thriving: Using Grounded Theory rigorous review method

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Khanna, Nishad
MacCormack, Jeffrey
Kutsyuruba, Benjamin
McCart, Stoney
Freeman, John
Youth , Development , Engagement , Thrive
The purpose of this study is to analyze the critical factors that support youth, ages 12 to 25, through critical life stage transitions and thriving throughout life. Using an adapted form of grounded theory rigorous review method, we created a model that represents what factors support youth thriving. We used a 9-stage process: identifying key search words, collecting academic and non-academic articles, establishing inter-rater reliability (κ =.77), selecting 257 academic and 223 non-academic articles to be reviewed, extracting initial data into tables, writing a scoping report for client review, creating appropriate standards of evidence criteria, analyzing critical factors and outcomes with a secondary review of literature, and identifying promising practices. Through a review of the major relevant theories and frameworks, three critical factors emerged as consistent and recurring: autonomy, relatedness, and competence. The evidence that links these critical factors to successful outcomes through critical transitions and long-term thriving is presented. Discussion includes the construct of engagement and how it represents a promising focus for future work of this nature. Finally, the merits of the Autonomy, Relatedness, and Competence (ARC) model as a framework for program evaluation and design are discussed.
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