Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
Degree Granting Department
Curriculum and Instruction
Sarah Kiefer, Ph.D.
Howard Johnston, Ph.D.
Elizabeth Shaunessy-Dedrick, Ph.D.
Jennifer Mariano, Ph.D.
Five C’s, Bar Mitzvah, Peers, Community, Education
This qualitative study explored Jewish early adolescents’ perceptions of their positive youth development, identity development, and purpose. Three theoretical frameworks informed the study, including Lerner’s 5 C’s of positive youth development, Marcia’s identity development, and Damon’s youth purpose. Specifically, the study explored how Jewish early adolescents perceive certain aspects of the local Jewish community as supportive of positive youth development, identity development, and youth purpose. I collected qualitative data through a series of three interviews with 4 Jewish early adolescents recruited using purposeful sampling. Data were analyzed through a hybrid approach to thematic analysis. The first finding was that Jewish early adolescent perceptions of their positive youth development, identity development, and purpose are shaped by self, family, and friends. The second finding was that within the Jewish community, identity development, positive youth development and purpose flourished while Jewish early adolescents often felt unsafe, left out, and misunderstood within the broader secular community context. These findings provide a deeper understanding of Jewish early adolescents’ perceptions of their positive youth development, identity development, and purpose, and have implications as to how the Jewish community may best support and nurture early adolescent development.
Scholar Commons Citation
Kurnov, Lauren B., "Jewish Early Adolescent Perceptions of their Positive Youth Development, Identity Development, and Purpose" (2021). Graduate Theses and Dissertations.