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Youth Communication equips and empowers educators and youth workers with real teen-written stories and a literacy-rich training model to engage struggling youth and build their social and emotional learning skills. [more]
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Teen Focus Groups
Teen Focus Groups—
Program Design with Teens in Mind
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Adults usually know much less than they think about teens' knowledge, interests, motivations, hopes, and fears. Unfortunately, the result is often that precious resources are wasted on programs that do not engage teens, or even alienate them.

Youth Communication staff are experts at talking with teens and getting beneath the surface to their real concerns. We do this informally and continually through our publishing program. Teens meet year-round with adult editors to identify what's most important to them. The teens then turn those concerns into stories, and we publish the "results" in our magazines, books, and websites.

We also use those skills to conduct formal focus groups. For more information, contact Loretta Chan,, or 212-279-0708 x. 115.

Here are several examples of focus groups we have run or helped to support:

Pregnant and parenting teens in foster care: How can agencies improve their approach to pregnancy prevention? What services do teen parents need to support healthy development of their children and prevent unwanted pregnancies in the future?

Teens with mental health challenges: What interventions and resources do teens consider helpful? What settings are best for delivering those services? What interventions can help reduce the stigmas of seeking mental health services? (Focus groups included teens, teachers, and community-based youth development staff.)

Teaching that makes a difference: What strategies, curriculum, expectations, and other qualities in teachers motivate teens to do their best in school?

College success for teens in foster care: What information, services, and support do teens in foster care need to prepare for college, get into college, and succeed once they are there?

Teens in foster care and the courts: How do teens in foster care get the legal services they need for family court, accessing appropriate educational services, etc.?

Youth Communication offers a range of focus group services depending on client needs, including:
  • Recruiting focus group members
  • Hosting and facilitating groups at our site or offsite.
  • Audio taping and transcription
  • Developing narrative stories and reports based on focus group information.
We do not offer one-way mirror settings at our site.

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