Positive Youth Development Life Skills Gained at the Iowa 4-H Youth Conference
AbstractResearch suggests 4-H programs build Life Skills such as leadership, communication, citizenship and learning. However, 4-H programs vary from long-term on-going experiences to shorter, more intense opportunities. This paper discusses a program evaluation articulating the life skill development of participants in a 3-day residential State 4-H Conference on a Midwestern college campus. The Life Skills assessed were in the areas of leadership, citizenship, communication, and learning as part of overall Life Skill development. Participants were youth ages 14-18 years. A retrospective pretest-posttest was used to evaluate skill development and understanding. Analysis, including paired sample t-tests, indicated growth in each of the 12 common outcome measures evaluated. This study supports the importance of purposeful planning and youth engagement in the learning process to achieve desired life skill outcomes.
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