The present study examined the association between community service and identity development in middle adolescence. The quantitative component of the study was first conducted to investigate the relationships between service experience and identity status. The qualitative component followed to explore how service change their identities. The findings showed that community service duration differentiated the middle adolescents with more mature identity statuses (e.g., achievement) from those with less mature identity statuses (e.g., diffusion) after students’ gender, grade, attitude toward service and their parents’ service engagement were controlled. This study also revealed that exposure to community service was effective in facilitating adolescents’ identity development in the domains of occupation and lifestyle. High-impact practices were recommended for the future design of service programs.
Bibliographical noteThis work was supported by the University Grants Committee of Hong Kong .
- Identity formation
- community service
- middle adolescence