Development of Delinquent Behavior in Early Adolescents in Hong Kong

Daniel T.L. SHEK*, Li LIN

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsBook ChapterResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The delinquent behavior of early adolescents in Hong Kong was examined. A sample of adolescents (N = 3,328 students at Wave 1) responded to a validated measure of delinquency on three occasions in their junior secondary school years. Prevalence findings showed that delinquent behavior was not prevalent, except in the areas of cheating, speaking foul language, damaging others’ properties, and engaging in assault. Regarding demographic correlates of delinquent behavior, it increased across time and adolescent boys showed more delinquent behavior than did adolescent girls. While economic disadvantage did not predict delinquent behavior, family intactness was associated with delinquent behavior across three waves concurrently. Generally speaking, higher levels of positive youth development and family functioning predicted lower delinquency in the junior secondary school years.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChinese Adolescents in Hong Kong: Family Life, Psychological Well-Being and Risk Behavior
EditorsDaniel T.L. SHEK, Rachel C. F. SUN, Cecilia M.S. MA
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9789811011979
ISBN (Print)9789812871428
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameQuality of Life in Asia
ISSN (Print)2211-0550
ISSN (Electronic)2211-0569

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The preparation for this work and the Project P.A.T.H.S. were financially supported by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Singapore.


  • Chinese
  • Chinese adolescents
  • Delinquency
  • Family functioning
  • Positive youth development


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