Using culturally-relevant theoretical frameworks, the Strengths, Assets, & Resilience (StAR) lab explores the ways in which families, schools, and communities influence positive development among African American adolescents and youth.

Research Themes

Family Relationships

Although adolescence is a time of increasing autonomy, parent-adolescent relationships can have important implications for youths' transition into adolescence and into emerging adulthood. Current lab interests include: 1) parenting in the context of adolescence; 2) fathers' parenting experiences and involvement; and 3) dyadic relationships.

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Racial and Cultural Processes

Race- and culturally-specific experiences have been associated with the development of African American adolescents. Using risk and resilience models, we examine how these experiences (e.g., racial discrimination) can influence parent and adolescent well-being. Cultural protective factors (e.g., ethnic-racial socialization) are of particular interest.

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School & Community Influences

There are multiple factors that can contribute to the successful development of youth. The lab has a specific interest in understanding how school and community contexts are associated with adolescents' adjustment (school; psychological). We are particularly interested in understanding how youths' community engagement impacts positive adjustment.

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Gender & Development

Gender has been suggested as an important context for understanding adolescent experiences and subsequent outcomes. Current research directions of the StAR lab include: 1) highlighting gender variation in risk, promotive and protective factors and 2) illuminating within group variation in African American girls' social experiences and well-being.

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Current Projects

Fathers and Mothers in the Lives of Youth (F.A.M.I.L.Y) Study

  Investigation exploring African American fathers’s parenting practices and influences on adolescent development. The FAMILY project is a longitudinal survey-based study with father, adolescent, and...

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African American Adolescent Girls’ School Experiences and Wellbeing: Identifying Resiliency Factors

Investigation exploring the school and peer experiences of African American adolescent girls. This investigation includes survey and daily diary measures. Recruitment begins in April 2018!...

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Recent News

The StaR Lab is going to the Society for Research on Adolescence’s 2018 Biennial Meeting!

We will see you there!! Lab Presentations: Paper Symposium: Conceptions and Correlates of Emotion Socialization among African American and Latino Samples Fri, April 13 3:45pm...

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Recent Articles on School Racial Climate!

Griffin, C. B., Cooper, S. M., Metzger, I. W., Golden, A. R., & White, C. N. (2017). School racial climate and the academic achievement of...

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The AAYD Lab is now the StAR Lab!!

The African American Youth Development (AAYD) research lab at the University of South Carolina is now the Strengths, Assets, & Resilience (StAR) research lab at...

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