Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Jean E. Rhodes

Second Advisor

Carla Herrera

Third Advisor

Alice S. Carter


Mentoring relationship quality (MRQ) is an important indicator of program effectiveness and is associated with a number of youth psychosocial and academic outcomes. However, evaluations of MRQ have largely relied on reports of a single informant’s perceptions and have failed to acknowledge that mentoring exists within larger ecological contexts in which various stakeholders may hold different views. In particular, few studies have included assessments of youth, mentors’, and parents’ perceptions of the relationship, and even fewer have examined the extent to which these perceptions converge, and whether patterns of convergence (or lack of convergence) in MRQ are associated with differential youth outcomes. To bridge these gaps in knowledge, this study draws on data from a large-scale, multi-wave evaluation of mentoring programs (n = 1,882, 57.5% females, mean age = 12.4) to examine the dynamic profiles of youth, mentor and parent MRQ ratings. Three-step latent profile analyses showed that a six-profile solution best fit the data. The largest profile (42.9%, i.e., Congruent) showed positive congruence in youth, parent, and mentor MRQ ratings. Results indicated that mentor-mentee matches in the Congruent profile lasted longer than those in the other profiles. Youth in this profile also experienced better outcomes, including fewer depressive and emotional symptoms than the other profiles. Compared to the Congruent profile, mentors in the profile in which mentors perceived more negative MRQ than both parent and youth (i.e., Divergent-M(-)) were less likely to have received training. In contrast, mentors in the profile in which both parent and youth perceived more negative MRQ than the mentor (i.e., Divergent-PY(-)) were more likely to utilize mentor support groups. These results suggest that different dyads may have different post-match training and support needs. Broadly, this study highlights the importance of taking a systemic perspective (i.e., accounting for multiple stakeholders) in the assessment of MRQ. Triangulation of MRQ responses is also recommended when assessing associations between MRQ and mentoring effectiveness.


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