March 2010 Issue No. 9
Good Intentions: The Beliefs and
Teens and Tweens Today
Youth are bombarded with
media images of less than exemplary role models in many aspects of
life. In light of what they see how will youth respond to their own
dilemmas in life? Are youth today any different in their
decision-making and moral judgment than the young people of 20 years
Good Intentions: The Beliefs and
Values of Teens and Tweens Today (2009) is our latest research
report and it explores the answers to the above questions and more.
Good Intentions builds on the GSRI's portfolio of work on girl
leadership development, which includes Exploring Girls Leadership
(2007), Change It Up! (2008), The New Leadership Landscape (2009),
Transforming Leadership, (2008), and Transforming Leadership
As we look
ahead, how can we work with girls and youth to help them turn their
"good intentions" into action? Read on to learn more and then please
let us know what you think! (Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org )
Michael Conn, Ph.D.
Girl Scout Research Institute
Girl Scouts of the
GIRLS' BELIEFS AND VALUES
Conducted with 3,263 3rd- to
12th-graders from around the country, Good Intentions: The Beliefs and
Values of Teens and Tweens Today (2009) paints an encouraging
picture about today's generation of girls and youth.
builds on a study published in 1989 by Girl Scouts of the USA, Girl
Scouts Survey on the Beliefs and Moral Values of America's Children,
and compares decision making and values between the two generations
Scout Research Institute, Good Intentions: The Beliefs and Values of
Teens and Tweens Today (2009)
the findings of the study, youth today say they are responsible to
themselves and to others. Furthermore, they value diversity,
acceptance, and community involvement. See chart below for
decisions youth say they would make, today and in 1989, that reflect
today are in many ways more committed to these values than were
their predecessors 20 years ago. In understanding the
commitment that youth today have to their values, parents and adults
can help youth bridge their good intentions, decision making, and
actions around making responsible choices, and help youth cope with
pressures to fulfill their good intentions.
Access Good Intentions, the full
report, and its tip sheets for parents and volunteers in English and
Also access prominent media
links to the study.
GIRLS LEADERSHIP: RESEARCH AND EVALUATION
Intentions builds on the body of girls leadership research conducted
by the GSRI and continues to support and inform the New Girl Scout Leadership
Experience, launched in the fall of 2008, for girls ages 5 to
Exploring Girls' Leadership
(2007) reviewed the current literature on girls and leadership.
The gaps found in the literature gave rise to Change It Up! What Girls Say About
Redefining Leadership (2008), an original research study,
which revealed that girls say they want to be the type of leader who
stands up for their beliefs and values, brings people together to
get things done, and tries to change the world for the better.
Rounding out the research on girls
nationwide, The New Leadership Landscape
(2009) echoed what girls say they want in a leader: personal
principles, ethical behavior, and the ability to effect social
change; not the command-and-control model of leadership.
It also revealed
the positive impact that the historic presidential election of 2008
had on youth: greater interest in political and social issues among
young people; heightened appreciation of women's abilities and
barriers they face; and, increased confidence in their ability to
achieve goals and to change things in the country.
Based on a great deal of research, Transforming Leadership (2008)
maps out the projected outcomes of the New Girl Scout Leadership
Experience for girls in Girl Scouting that will allow girls to focus
on desired changes and Girl Scouting to inform the youth development
Transforming Leadership Continued
(2009) expands the discussion of leadership begun in
Transforming Leadership with its focus on the three Girl Scout
Processes—Girl Led, Learning by Doing, and Cooperative
when integrated with the outcomes will provide girls with the kinds
of experiences that help them become the kind of leaders they want
to be today and in the future.