Adding Focused Life Skills Training to a Civic Engagement Program to Boost Life Skills Competencies in Youth

Brian Brandt, Jan Klein


This paper highlights the impacts of a revised curriculum which incorporated a strong life skills focus into an existing civic education curriculum (for 4-H youth). The revised curriculum resulted in actual youth gains in life skills competencies. The study also explored the effect of volunteer facilitators in the implementation of an added life skills training component. Despite some significant limitations to the internal and external validity of the study, preliminary indications were that adding explicit life skills training content does in fact lead to an increase in life skills competencies. This was clearer in cases where volunteer facilitators fully implemented the additional content versus implementing none or only part of the life skills training. The limitations of the study and suggestions for future research are outlined in the conclusion.

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Copyright (c) 2016 Brian Brandt, Jan Klein

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