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Volume 11 (2011), Pages 253-266
Research Article

Impact of the Project P.A.T.H.S. in the Junior Secondary School Years: Individual Growth Curve Analyses

1Department of Applied Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
2Public Policy Research Institute, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong
3Department of Sociology, East China Normal University, Shanghai, China
4Kiang Wu Nursing College of Macau, Macau, China
5Department of Pediatrics, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, Lexington, KY, USA

Received 24 October 2010; Revised 17 November 2010; Accepted 17 November 2011

Academic Editor: Joav Merrick

Copyright © 2011 Daniel T. L. Shek and Cecilia M. S. Ma.


The Tier 1 Program of the Project P.A.T.H.S. (Positive Adolescent Training through Holistic Social Programs) is a positive youth development program implemented in school settings utilizing a curricular-based approach. In the third year of the Full Implementation Phase, 19 experimental schools (n = 3,006 students) and 24 control schools (n = 3,727 students) participated in a randomized group trial. Analyses based on linear mixed models via SPSS showed that participants in the experimental schools displayed better positive youth development than did participants in the control schools based on different indicators derived from the Chinese Positive Youth Development Scale, including positive self-identity, prosocial behavior, and general positive youth development attributes. Differences between experimental and control participants were also found when students who joined the Tier 1 Program and perceived the program to be beneficial were employed as participants of the experimental schools. The present findings strongly suggest that the Project P.A.T.H.S. is making an important positive impact for junior secondary school students in Hong Kong.