Raposa, Burton, & Rhodes (in press). Cross-age peer mentoring relationships: A meta-analysis. American Journal of Community Psychology
Although most mentoring programs for youth are structured around intergenerational relationships, a growing number of programs rely on cross-age peer mentoring. Such programs capitalize on the availability of youth mentors to promote positive outcomes in younger peers. This study used a multi-level meta-analytic approach to estimate the effect size of cross-age peer mentoring programs and evaluate potential moderators of peer mentoring program effectiveness. Analyses included six studies and revealed a medium-sized overall effect of cross-age peer mentoring programs (g = .45). Several characteristics moderated effect sizes, with larger effects for programs that were conducted outside of the school setting on school days (i.e., weekend, summer, or in community settings), conducted in urban settings, and had moderate/high levels of adult oversight/supervision. Results highlight the potential benefits of cross-age peer mentoring for youth.