After-school youth development programs: A developmental-ecological model of current research

Nathaniel R. Riggs, Mark T. Greenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Although there has been a rapid increase in funding and attention to after-school programs, there is little understanding of how after-school programs impact children's developmental trajectories. The heterogeneity of American children makes it very unlikely that all children need after-school programming or that there is but one brand of after-school programming suitable for all youth. We discuss the numerous developmental and contextual factors that may influence which children benefit most from after-school programs as well as the nature of the after-school programs most beneficial to children's needs. The value of utilizing an ecological and developmental perspective to after-school program evaluation are presented, including the need for improved research designs and more detailed analyses of program type and services as well as a more complete determination of which children benefit the most from after-school participation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-190
Number of pages14
JournalClinical Child and Family Psychology Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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