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The impact of a family-centered intervention on the ecology of adolescent antisocial behavior: Modeling developmental sequelae and trajectories during adolescence

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 July 2012

Mark J. Van Ryzin*
Affiliation:
University of Oregon
Thomas J. Dishion
Affiliation:
University of Oregon
*
Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Mark J. Van Ryzin, Child and Family Center, University of Oregon, 195 West 12th Avenue, Eugene, OR 97401-3408; E-mail: markv@uoregon.edu.

Abstract

This study used an experimental, longitudinal field trial involving random assignment to the Family Check-Up (FCU) to explore the social ecology of adolescent antisocial behavior. A sample of 998 youths and their families was followed from early to late adolescence (age 12 to 18–19). In the intervention condition, 115 families (23%) elected to receive the FCU. In general, random assignment to the FCU in middle school was associated with reductions in late adolescence antisocial behavior (age 18–19). Variable-centered analyses revealed that the effects were mediated by reductions in family conflict from early to middle adolescence (age 12–15). The link between family conflict and antisocial behavior in turn was mediated by association with deviant peers at age 17; parental monitoring at age 17 was also influential but did not attain the status of a mediator. Person-oriented analyses suggested that the FCU was associated with declining trajectories of family conflict and rising trajectories of parental monitoring but was not associated with trajectories of deviant peer association. A dual-trajectory analysis indicated that the pathways to adolescent antisocial behavior were myriad and varied, suggesting new directions for developmental and intervention research.

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Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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