Recognition for positive behavior is an appropriate response of the social environment to elicit desirable external behavior among the youth. Such positive responses, rendered from various social systems, include tangible and intangible reinforcements. The following theories are used to explain the importance of recognizing positive behavior: operational conditioning, observational learning, self-determination, and humanistic perspective. In the current work, culturally and socially desirable behaviors are discussed in detail with reference to Chinese adolescents. Positive behavior recognition is especially important to adolescent development because it promotes identity formation as well as cultivates moral reasoning and social perspective thinking from various social systems. The significance of recognizing positive behavior is illustrated through the support, tutorage, invitation, and subsidy provided by Hong Kong's social systems in recognition of adolescent volunteerism. The practical implications of positive behavior recognition on youth development programs are also discussed in this work.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Law, Ben M. F.; Siu, Andrew M. H.; and Shek, Daniel T. L., "Recognition for Positive Behavior as a Critical Youth Development Construct: Conceptual Bases and Implications on Youth Service Development" (2012). Pediatrics Faculty Publications. 39.