Validation of the Brief Sense of Community Scale among youth of color from an underserved urban community

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Abstract

Neighborhood sense of community (SOC) is a key construct in the community psychology literature. While the research on neighborhood SOC has progressed significantly, there is a need to further validate the Brief Sense of Community Scale (BSCS) among youth. A critical area of scholarship, therefore, is to examine the factor structure of the BSCS among a cohort of adolescents, particularly from the United States. This study tested the factor structure of the BSCS among a sample of urban youth of color (N = 383) using SPSS AMOS, a structural equation modeling software. After testing the factor structure, we examined the relationships between each of the BSCS subscales and conceptually related variables (e.g., psychological empowerment, relational power, and school importance). Results from this study confirm the first- and second-order factor structure of the BSCS among youth. BSCS and its underlying subscales were both correlated with one another and correlated with the intrapersonal component of psychological empowerment, relational power, and school importance. Our findings have critical implications for the field of community psychology and the development and use of the BSCS among adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1062-1074
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Volume46
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2018

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