Affective Orientation and School Persistence Among African American Youth: Implications for Afrocentric Youth Research and Practice

Husain Lateef, Lauara Brugger, Donte Boyd, Adrian Gale, Ed Dee Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Completion of high school is a critical juncture predicting future success among adolescents. However, Black youth are often subjected to structural and micro-manifestations of structural barriers in schools, hindering their success. Moreover, research on resiliency factors associated with the academic success of Black adolescents facing structural barriers is woefully underdeveloped. In response, this study tested the associations between a resiliency factor (proposed by the Nguzo Saba and African-centered theory) and three predictors of school success (i.e., engagement, initiative-taking, and diligence). The study sample was derived from the Templeton Flourishing Children Project Pilot Study, which measured variables that contribute to “flourishing” and are important for improving youth outcomes. The sample of Black youth was evenly representative of both Black boys and girls. The results suggest that dimensions of school success can be bolstered by increased relational and personal concern among Black youth for their fellow peers, which supports that an Afrocentric worldview may be a relevant developmental asset for positive outcomes in Black adolescents. Finally, the implications of these findings are discussed, including opportunities and strategies for school behavioral health workers to assist Black youth who may be at risk for school failure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4-15
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of African American Studies
Volume26
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies
  • Cultural Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science

Keywords

  • Affective orientation
  • African centered
  • Behavioral health
  • Black youth
  • Collectivist orientation
  • School persistence

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