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A phenomenological variant of ecological systems theory (PVEST): a self-organization perspective in context.

01 Dec 1997-Development and Psychopathology (Cambridge University Press)-Vol. 9, Iss: 4, pp 817-833
TL;DR: A framework that emphasizes and integrates individuals' intersubjective experiences with Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory (PVEST) is introduced and compared with self-organizational perspectives and the findings suggest critically important roles for teachers and peers in the negative learning attitude of midadolescent economically disadvantaged African-American students.
Abstract: A framework that emphasizes and integrates individuals' intersubjective experiences with Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory (PVEST) is introduced and compared with self-organizational perspectives. Similarities, differences and advantages of each framework are described. In a demonstration of PVEST's utility, a subset of data from the 3rd year of a longitudinal study (14- to 16-year-old middle adolescent African-Americans) is used for examining an achievement variable: negative learning attitude. Explored separately by gender, a regression model that contained risk, stress, and a reactive coping variable for the prediction of negative learning attitudes was investigated. For boys, stress was an independent stressor across steps independent of the other variables entered; social support variable, perceived unpopularity with peers, that was a significant predictor of girls' negative learning attitude. Particularly for boys, the findings suggest critically important roles for teachers and peers in the negative learning attitude of midadolescent economically disadvantaged African-American students.

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Summary

  • A framework that emphasizes and integrates individuals’ intersubjective experiences with Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory is introduced and compared with self-organizational perspectives.
  • Similarities, differences and advantages of each framework are described.
  • In a demonstration of PVEST’s utility, a subset of data from the 3rd year of a longitudinal study (14-to 16-yearold middle adolescent African–Americans) is used for examining an achievement variable: negative learning attitude.
  • Explored separately by gender, a regression model that contained risk, stress, and a reactive coping variable for the prediction of negative learning attitudes was investigated.
  • For boys, stress was an independent stressor across steps independent of the other variables entered; social support was particularly important for males.
  • For girls, not only was stress not important but it was also only the social support variable, perceived unpopularity with peers, that was a significant predictor of girls’ negative learning attitude.
  • Particularly for boys, the findings suggest critically important roles for teachers and peers in the negative learning attitude of midadolescent economically disadvantaged African–American students.

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Development and Psychopathology, 9 (1997), 817–833
Copyright 1997 Cambridge University Press
Printed in the United States of America
A Phenomenological Variant of Ecological
Systems Theory (PVEST): A self-
organization perspective in context
MARGARET BEALE SPENCER, DAVIDO DUPREE,
AND
TRACEY HARTMANN
University of Pennsylvania
Abstract
A framework that emphasizes and integrates individuals’ intersubjective experiences with Bronfenbrenner’s
ecological systems theory (PVEST) is introduced and compared with self-organizational perspectives. Similarities,
differences and advantages of each framework are described. In a demonstration of PVEST’s utility, a subset of data
from the 3rd year of a longitudinal study (14- to 16-year-old middle adolescent African–Americans) is used for
examining an achievement variable: negative learning attitude. Explored separately by gender, a regression model
that contained risk, stress, and a reactive coping variable for the prediction of negative learning attitudes was
investigated. For boys, stress was an independent stressor across steps independent of the other variables entered;
social support was particularly important for males. For girls, not only was stress not important but it was also only
the social support variable, perceived unpopularity with peers, that was a significant predictor of girls’ negative
learning attitude. Particularly for boys, the findings suggest critically important roles for teachers and peers in the
negative learning attitude of midadolescent economically disadvantaged African–American students.
Across the life course, experiences in differ- activities). More specifically, it is not merely
the experience but one’s perception of experi-ent cultural contexts (e.g., home, school, peer
group, community) influence how one per- ences in different cultural contexts that influ-
ences how one perceives oneself. Perceptualceives oneself. This statement could simply
mean that there is a relationship between life processes are dependent upon social–cogni-
tive processes which aid in explaining the de-experiences and self-esteem. However, this
assertion goes further than that. We assert that velopmental variations in response. Conse-
quent meaning making processes include thethe processing of phenomena and experiences
not only influences how much one feels val- responsive coping methods or corrective
problem-solving strategies pursued. The re-ued or valuable (e.g., self-esteem), but it also
influences how one gives meaning and signif- petitiveness of the context-linked corrective
problem-solving strategies (i.e., reactive cop-icance to different aspects of oneself (e.g.,
abilities, physical attributes, behaviors, and ing methods) become linked to stable coping
responses: one’s emergent identity or self-
processes. This is important because it is often
The research reported was supported by funds to the first
these self-perceptions that temporally influ-
author from several sources: The Spencer, W. T. Grant,
and Ford Foundations, The Commonwealth Fund and the
ence responses: they influence how one will
Social Science Research Council. Additional supplemen-
adapt to the same cultural contexts across the
tal support was provided by the Annenberg Foundation.
life course. These generally stable self-per-
Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Mar-
ceptions will influence whether one uses or
garet Beale Spencer, University of Pennsylvania, Gradu-
downplays certain abilities, emphasizes or
ate School of Education, 3700 Walnut St., Philadelphia,
PA 19104-6216.
draws attention away from certain physical at-
817

M. B. Spencer et al.818
tributes, adopts or suppresses certain behav- the meaning and significance of their youths’
race, gender, and actions. American cultureiors, engages in or shies away from certain
activities. Self-perceptions organize one’s be- and the minority experience are themes ex-
plained to some sons by parents. However,haviors, thoughts, and actions. This is evident
when cultural stereotypes become self-fulfill- such formally shared and stated explanations
are not the norm (see Spencer, 1983, 1990), yeting prophecies. For instance, a young Afri-
can–American male may take advantage of the dialectic and attendant tension of American
culture still exist even when not made ex-the knowledge that he is perceived by the
larger society as violent and mischievous. plicit. In the context of such a culture, youth
having similar experiences can exhibit eitherThat male may begin to behave more aggres-
sively if he also perceives that aggressive be- resiliency or psychopathology. Thus, a phe-
nomenological approach (i.e., how the indi-havior may increase his status among his
peers. vidual perceives or makes sense of an experi-
ence) is useful in identifying specific pointsNormative development themes, including
subjective self-perceptual processes, increase in need of intervention or support.
Combining a phenomenological approachin complexity because of the character and
content of high risk environments associated with Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems the-
ory provides a critical integration (Spencer,with ethnicity and visibility for American mi-
norities. These subjective processes are poten- 1995). The integration affords a method for
capturing the individual’s ability to under-tially, although not necessarily, damaging to
“the self” particularly when they occur in stand societal expectations, stereotypes and
biases—even those that they themselves en-chronically high risk contexts. For some, the
chronic state of risk requires myriad modes of dorse or fulfill (Gordon & Gergen, 1968). The
synthesis also helps to acknowledge the criti-coping necessary to offset feelings of impo-
tence and helplessness (see Chestang, 1972; cal and undergirding role of developmental
changes in social cognition, multi-level socialSeligman, 1975; Boykin, 1986). In fact, the
specific coping processes required for people context character and content, and stage-rele-
vant social experiences that differentially in-of color were acknowledged nearly a century
ago by DuBois (1903) who suggested that fluence meaning making processes across the
life course (Spencer, 1982, 1985). It is espe-American Blacks necessitated a virtual “dou-
ble consciousness.” The double consciousness cially important to recognize meaning making
processes during adolescence given the novelreferred to by DuBois was the dual status of
being both American and Black. We further thought processes associated with that period
which provide a degree of recursive thinkingrecognize the quandary of being American,
Black, and male. In America, stereotypical unavailable at earlier periods of development.
Adolescence, using Lewis’ (1995) model,male behavior takes on different meaning
when related to Black males. Behavior which would be a particularly salient time for critical
aspects of self-organization to occur. In-may be evaluated as daring, independent-
minded, or exciting when seen in majority creases in social cognitive functioning occur
that increase the amount and quality of infor-culture (i.e., European American) males, may
be seen as dangerous or threatening in Black mation coming into the self-system—informa-
tion that now has the added dimension of be-males. Similar behavior takes on a different
meaning. Anecdotally, parents share how they ing about the self and even the self-organizing
process. Added to this are the concurrentmust instruct their young males, in particular,
in how to respond properly to police. This biological processes of maturation, puberty,
hormonal and emotional fluctuations (e.g.,child rearing ploy reduces the probability that
their Black sons become victim to police bru- Spencer, Dupree, Swanson, & Cunningham,
in press). Finally, the tendency for adoles-tality as a result of having their behavior mis-
interpreted as threatening or aggressive. Thus, cents to be risk takers causing them to take in
more, and to experience their environmentminority parent child rearing efforts require,
of necessity, providing explicit explanation of more dramatically than previously is seen.

Self-organization in context 819
Figure 1. A Phenomenological Variant of Ecological Systems Theory (PVEST) (Spencer,
1995).
Swanson and Spencer (in press) and Kochman evaluative processes appear to be unavoidably
linked to the experience of stress. Stressful(1994) demonstrate the level of environmental
risk quite dramatically for African–American situations require a response. In turn, one
must determine whether a reactive coping re-adolescents generally; and Cunningham (1994)
and Cunningham and Spencer (1996) illus- sponse had its intended effect. Often we look
to others to monitor ourselves and our actionstrate the situation specifically for an unusually
vulnerable group: African–American adoles- (e.g., Do others’ actions or behaviors change?
Do others’ behaviors or feelings towards uscent males. Thus, the amount, type, and fre-
quency of changes in the life of the youth change?). The experience of stress requires
coping which may be of two kinds: reactivewould be at an all time high and the rapidity
and complexity of self-organization occurring coping methods and stable (psychosocial)
coping responses. Figure 1 illustrates that re-at this time somewhat phenomenal. This per-
haps explains why identity formation takes active coping methods may be of two types:
maladaptive solutions to the dilemma of stressroot at this stage as a virtual “safety net”
against multiple opportunities for maladaptive engagement or adaptive solutions. Both are
intended to be corrective problem solvingreactive coping methods in response to
chronic and varied contexts of risk. strategies although the solutions are qualita-
tively distinct. As indicated in Figure 1, anAs described by Spencer (1995) and Spen-
cer and Dupree (1996), illustrated in Figure 1, unavoidable, reciprocal, and bidirectional
linkage exists between the two coping re-and suggested by Bandura’s (1978) theoriz-
ing, self-system development is reciprocally sponses: reactive coping methods and stable
(psychosocial) coping responses. Reactivedetermined from self–other appraisal pro-
cesses (i.e., what one thinks others think coping methods (e.g., withdrawal) and stable
(psychosocial) coping processes (e.g., Euro-about him or her). These recursive self–other

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  • ...According to the PVEST model, a number of important psychological and behavioral outcomes are dependent upon theway inwhich the adolescent copes with society’s racism and other adolescent developmental tasks (Spencer et al., 1997)....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Gender differences in peer and classroom discrimination and in the impact of earlier and later discrimination experiences on academic outcomes are found and the need to consider interactions of individual- and contextual-level factors in better understanding African American youths' academic and social development is discussed.
Abstract: The authors examined relationships among racial identity, school-based racial discrimination experiences, and academic engagement outcomes for adolescent boys and girls in Grades 8 and 11 (n = 204 boys and n = 206 girls). The authors found gender differences in peer and classroom discrimination and in the impact of earlier and later discrimination experiences on academic outcomes. Racial centrality related positively to school performance and school importance attitudes for boys. Also, centrality moderated the relationship between discrimination and academic outcomes in ways that differed across gender. For boys, higher racial centrality related to diminished risk for lower school importance attitudes and grades from experiencing classroom discrimination relative to boys lower in centrality, and girls with higher centrality were protected against the negative impact of peer discrimination on school importance and academic self-concept. However, among lower race-central girls, peer discrimination related positively to academic self-concept. Finally, socioeconomic background moderated the relationship of discrimination with academic outcomes differently for girls and boys. The authors discuss the need to consider interactions of individual- and contextual-level factors in better understanding African American youths' academic and social development.

456 citations


Cites background from "A phenomenological variant of ecolo..."

  • ...…of particular social-cognitive attributes (e.g., a heightened awareness of how they are viewed by others) that might relate to a higher likelihood of perceiving discrimination (Spencer et al., 1997; see also Brown & Bigler, 2005, for a recent review on discrimination in adolescence)....

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  • ...…must consider those processes in the context of the many structural and social forces within ethnic minority children’s lives that directly and indirectly shape their experiences and opportunities for academic, social, and psychological development (Garcia Coll et al., 1996; Spencer et al., 1997)....

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  • ...Furthermore, there is evidence of the negative psychological and academic impact of general social rejection and peer harassment on Black youth (Graham & Juvonen, 2002; Spencer et al., 1997), as well as that specifically due to race (DuBois et al., 2002; Fisher et al., 2000; Wong et al., 2003)....

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  • ...Furthermore, there is evidence of the negative psychological and academic impact of general social rejection and peer harassment on Black youth (Graham & Juvonen, 2002; Spencer et al., 1997), as well as that specifically due to race (DuBois et al....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, emerging research trends and conclusions regarding the "promotive" and "protective" effects of racial and ethnic identity, ethnic-racial socialization, and cultural orientation, as well as some of the mechanisms that may account for their salutary properties.
Abstract: Experiences of racial and ethnic discrimina- tion pose significant threats to the development and well- being of racial and ethnic minority children. Fortunately, not all youth who experience discrimination are suscepti- ble to its harmful effects. Growing evidence points to sev- eral racial and ethnic factors that promote positive youth development and protect against the potentially damaging effects of racial and ethnic adversity. This article summa- rizes emerging research trends and conclusions regarding the "promotive" and "protective" effects of racial and ethnic identity, ethnic-racial socialization, and cultural orientation, as well as some of the mechanisms that may account for their salutary properties. The article con- cludes with a brief discussion of important considerations and directions for the future study of racial and ethnic resilience processes in ethnic minority youth.

420 citations

References
More filters
Book
01 Jan 1975
TL;DR: In this article, the authors proposed a learned-helplessness model of depression and developed a set of guidelines for depression and learned helplessness, including depression, anxiety and unpredictability, childhood failure, sudden psychosomatic death controllability.
Abstract: Overview - depression, golden girl, anxiety and unpredictability, childhood failure, sudden psychosomatic death controllability - voluntary responding, response independence and response contingency - the superstition experiments experimental studies - helplessness saps the motivation to initiate responses - learned helplessness in the dog, the triadic design, motivational deficits in several species, generality of helplessness across situations helplessness disrupts to ability to learn helplessness produces emotional disturbance theory - cure and immunization - the statement of the theory, motivational disturbance, cognitive disturbance, emotional disturbance cure and prevention - limits on helplessness alternative theories - competing motor responses, adaptation, emotional exhaustion, and sensitization physiological approaches to helplessness depression - types of depression the learned-helplessness model of depression - ground rules, symptoms of depression and learned helplessness, etiology of depression and learned helplessness, a speculation about success and depression, cure of depression and learned helplessness, prevention of depression and learned helplessness anxiety and unpredictability - definition of unpredictability anxiety and the safety-signal hypothesis - the safety-signal hypothesis upredictability and monitoring fear stomach ulcers preference for predictability the relationship of predictability to controllability - self-administration, perceived control systematic desensitization and uncontrollability conclusion emotional development and education - the dance of development - reafference maternal deprivation predictability and controllability in childhood and adolescence - the classroom, poverty death - death from helplessness in animals death from helplessness in humans - institutionalized helplessness, death from helplessness in old age, infant death and anaclitic depression.

4,406 citations

BookDOI
22 Dec 2015
TL;DR: Recueil d'essais sur le probleme racial aux Etats-Unis, dont certains etaient precedemment parus dans le magazine "Atlantic Monthly" as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: Recueil d'essais sur le probleme racial aux Etats-Unis, dont certains etaient precedemment parus dans le magazine "Atlantic Monthly"

3,823 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The reciprocal analysis of self-regulatory processes was proposed by Bandura as mentioned in this paper as a basic analytic principle for analyzing psychosocial phenomena at the level of intrapersonal development, interpersonal transactions, and interactive functioning of organizational and social systems.
Abstract: Explanations of human behavior have generally favored unidirectional causal models emphasizing either environmental or internal determinants of behavior. In social learning theory, causal processes are conceptualized in terms of reciprocal determinism. Viewed from this perspective, psychological functioning involves a continuous reciprocal interaction between behavioral, cognitive, and environmental influences. The major controversies between unidirectional and reciprocal models of human behavior center on the issue of self influences. A self system within the framework of social learning theory comprises cognitive structures and subjunctions for perceiving, evaluating, and regulating behavior, not a psychic agent that controls action. The influential role of the self system in reciprocal determinism is documented through a reciprocal analysis of self-regulatory processes. Reciprocal determinism is proposed as a basic analytic principle for analyzing psychosocial phenomena at the level of intrapersonal development, interpersonal transactions, and interactive functioning of organizational and social systems. Recent years have witnessed a heightened interest in the basic conceptions of human nature underlying different psychological theories. This interest stems in part from growing recognition of how such conceptions delimit research to selected processes and are in turn shaped by findings of paradigms embodying the particular view. As psychological knowledge is converted to behavioral technologies, the models of human behavior on which research is premised have important social as well as theoretical implications (Bandura, 1974). Explanations of human behavior have generally been couched in terms of a limited set of determinants, usually portrayed as operating in a unidirectional manner. Exponents of environmental determinism study and theorize about how behavior is controlled by situational influences. Those favoring personal determinism seek the causes of human behavior in dispositional sources in the form of instincts, drives, traits, and other motivational forces within the individual. Interactionists attempt to accommodate both situational 344 • APRIL 1978 • AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGIST Copyright 1978 by the American Psychological Association, Inc. 0003-066X/78/3304-0344$00.7S and dispositional factors, but within an essentially unidirectional view of behavioral processes. The present article analyzes the various causal models and the role of self influences in behavior from the perspective of reciprocal determinism. Unidirectional environmental determinism is carried to its extreme in the more radical forms of behaviorism. It is not that the interdependence of personal and environmental influences is never acknowledged by advocates of this point of view. Indeed, Skinner (1971) has often commented on the capacity for countercontrol. However, the notion of countercontrol portrays the environment as the instigating force to which individuals can counteract. As will be shown later, people create and activate environments as well as rebut them. A further conceptual problem is that having been acknowledged, the reality of reciprocal interdependence is negated and the preeminent control of behavior by the environment is repeatedly reasserted (e.g., \"A person does not act upon the world, the world acts upon him,\" Skinner, 1971, p. 211). The environment thus becomes an autonomous force that automatically shapes, orchestrates, and controls behavior. Whatever allusions are made to two-way processes, environmental rule clearly emerges as the reigning metaphor in the operant view of reality. There exists no shortage of advocates of alternative theories emphasizing the personal determination of environments. Humanists and existentialists, who stress the human capacity for conscious judgment and intentional action, contend that individuals determine what they become by their own free choices. Most psychologists find conceptions of human behavior in terms of unidirectional personal determinism as unsatisfying as those espousing unidirectional environmental determinism. Preparation of this article was facilitated by Public Health Research Grant M-S162 from the National Institute of Mental Health and by the James McKeen Cattell Award. Requests for reprints should be sent to Albert Bandura, Department of Psychology, Stanford University, Stanford, California 9430S. To contend that mind creates reality fails to acknowledge that environmental influences partly determine what people attend to, perceive, and think. To contend further that the methods of natural science are incapable of dealing with personal determinants of behavior does not enlist many supporters from the ranks of those who are moved more by empirical evidence than by philosophic discourse. Social learning theory (Bandura, 1974, 1977b) analyzes behavior in terms of reciprocal determinism. The term determinism is used here to signify the production of effects by events, rather than in the doctrinal sense that actions are completely determined by a prior sequence of causes independent of the individual. Because of the complexity of interacting factors, events produce effects probabilistically rather than inevitably. In their transactions with the environment, people are not simply reactors to external stimulation. Most external influences affect behavior through intermediary cognitive processes. Cognitive factors partly determine which external events will be observed, how they will be perceived, whether they have any lasting effects, what valence and efficacy they have, and how the information they convey will be organized for future use. The extraordinary capacity of humans to use symbols enables them to engage in reflective thought, to create, and to plan foresightful courses of action in thought rather than having to perform possible options and suffer the consequences of thoughtless action. By altering their immediate environment, by creating cognitive self-inducements, and by arranging conditional incentives for themselves, people can exercise some influence over their own behavior. An act therefore includes among its determinants self-produced influences. It is true that behavior is influenced by the environment, but the environment is partly of a person's own making. By their actions, people play a role in creating the social milieu and other circumstances that arise in their daily transactions. Thus, from the social learning perspective, psychological functioning involves a continuous reciprocal interaction between behavioral, cognitive, and environmental influences. Reciprocal Determinism and Interactionism Over the years the locus of the causes of behavior has been debated in personality and social psychology in terms of dispositional and situational UNIDIRECTIONAL

1,937 citations


"A phenomenological variant of ecolo..." refers background in this paper

  • ...As indicated in Figure 1, an As described by Spencer (1995) and Spencer and Dupree (1996), illustrated in Figure 1, unavoidable, reciprocal, and bidirectional linkage exists between the two coping reand suggested by Bandura’s (1978) theorizing, self-system development is reciprocally sponses: reactive coping methods and stable (psychosocial) coping responses....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The current study is aimed at establishing normal values for children of different ages and investigating the influence of the variables of sex, race socio-economic class, and religion on these normal values.

969 citations


"A phenomenological variant of ecolo..." refers background in this paper

  • ...In turn, one must determine whether a reactive coping readolescents generally; and Cunningham (1994) and Cunningham and Spencer (1996) illus- sponse had its intended effect....

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  • ...In turn, one must determine whether a reactive coping readolescents generally; and Cunningham (1994) and Cunningham and Spencer (1996) illus- sponse had its intended effect. Often we look to others to monitor ourselves and our actions trate the situation specifically for an unusually vulnerable group: African–American adoles- (e.g., Do others’ actions or behaviors change? Do others’ behaviors or feelings towards us cent males. Thus, the amount, type, and frequency of changes in the life of the youth change?). The experience of stress requires coping which may be of two kinds: reactive would be at an all time high and the rapidity and complexity of self-organization occurring coping methods and stable (psychosocial) coping responses. Figure 1 illustrates that reat this time somewhat phenomenal. This perhaps explains why identity formation takes active coping methods may be of two types: maladaptive solutions to the dilemma of stress root at this stage as a virtual “safety net” against multiple opportunities for maladaptive engagement or adaptive solutions. Both are intended to be corrective problem solving reactive coping methods in response to chronic and varied contexts of risk. strategies although the solutions are qualitatively distinct. As indicated in Figure 1, an As described by Spencer (1995) and Spencer and Dupree (1996), illustrated in Figure 1, unavoidable, reciprocal, and bidirectional linkage exists between the two coping reand suggested by Bandura’s (1978) theorizing, self-system development is reciprocally sponses: reactive coping methods and stable (psychosocial) coping responses....

    [...]

  • ...The student populations of three of the four middlepositive, respectively. schools where the students were originally as female headed if there was neither a husband or live-in boyfriend present in the home.sampled were over 90% African–American; over 60% of the students in the fourth middle The Life Event Record (Coddington, 1972) is a 40-item list of events to which the respon-school were African–American....

    [...]

  • ...…as female headed if there was neither a husband or live-in boyfriend present in the home.sampled were over 90% African–American; over 60% of the students in the fourth middle The Life Event Record (Coddington, 1972) is a 40-item list of events to which the respon-school were African–American....

    [...]

  • ...sampled were over 90% African–American; over 60% of the students in the fourth middle The Life Event Record (Coddington, 1972) is a 40-item list of events to which the responschool were African–American....

    [...]

Book
01 Jan 1953

522 citations


"A phenomenological variant of ecolo..." refers background in this paper

  • ...…(e.g., home, school, community) but by the phenomeno-verse sociocultural contexts (e.g., expectations, attitudes, cultural beliefs and assump- logical experience of race, gender, physical status, and many other potential factors.tions), and normative developmental tasks (see Havighurst, 1953)....

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Frequently Asked Questions (1)
Q1. What are the contributions in "A phenomenological variant of ecological systems theory (pvest): a self-organization perspective in context" ?

In a demonstration of PVEST ’ s utility, a subset of data from the 3rd year of a longitudinal study ( 14-to 16-yearold middle adolescent African–Americans ) is used for examining an achievement variable: negative learning attitude. Explored separately by gender, a regression model that contained risk, stress, and a reactive coping variable for the prediction of negative learning attitudes was investigated. This journal article is available at ScholarlyCommons: https: //repository. Particularly for boys, the findings suggest critically important roles for teachers and peers in the negative learning attitude of midadolescent economically disadvantaged African–American students.