Factors underlying junior high school students' seeking help from social services

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)62_Review of books or of software (or similar publications/items)peer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-69
Journal / PublicationChildhood
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2005


Adolescents with emotional, interpersonal and even academic problems can benefit from using social services. However, these adolescents are unlikely to seek help from social services, thus creating issues in service underutilization. Supposedly, these adolescents may not find social services to be useful or socially desirable. How these perceptions impede adolescents' help-seeking intention is the focus of the present study, which collected data from 1065 junior high school students in Hong Kong, China. Results support the hypotheses that the perceived usefulness of social services and perceived societal disdain for seeking help from the services affected students' likelihood of help seeking in the presence of problems. These findings generally hold for students who seek help to deal with academic, emotional and interpersonal problems. Promoting the image of social services is therefore necessary to encourage adolescents with problems to seek help from the services.

Research Area(s)

  • Help seeking, Power theory, Rational choice theory, Societal disdain