Attitude Of Young People Of Early Juvenile Age To Legal Regulation


The relevance of the study of this problem is due to the increased number of crimes committed by young people in early adolescence. Currently in psychology and related disciplines there is no methodology and a system of practical methods that allow to regulate negative behavioral manifestations at the level of an individual or a society. The aim of the work was to identify and study the level of the formation of legal concepts and attitudes to legal regulation in young men and girls in early adolescence. The leading method in the study of this problem was the methods of studying legal representations, including an assessment of the attitude to law, legal regulation; the study of the formation of legal concepts. Methods were conducted among 35 boys and 65 girls, 17-18 years. As a result, the hypothesis about the relationship between the formation of legal concepts and the attitude of the individual to law and legal regulation was confirmed. The work revealed that a positive attitude towards law, legal regulation in various spheres of life is directly correlated with the level of the formation of legal concepts of the individual. The higher the level of development and quality of the legal concepts of the student, the more positively he refers to the law and practice of its application, tolerant of different cultural traditions and beliefs, mentality. The materials presented in the article make it possible to contribute to the development of the concept of prevention of antisocial behavior of the individual.

Keywords: Legal consciousnessattitude to the lawlegal conceptsyoung menearly adolescence


The problem of asocial behavior of a person of the early juvenile age requires more and more careful attention form scientists and practical specialists, especially nowadays. The increased number of acts of crimes relating to extremism, vandalism, destructive cults, violence of crowd, mobbing, mass manifestations of family violence reflects the acute significance of this topic (Deineka, & Zabarin, 2014). Young people of the early juvenile age (15 – 18 years) represent active and radical part of contemporary Russian society, they are ready to join different forms of destructive activity.

Problem Statement

In spite of the acute significance of the study of asocial behavior of a person of the early juvenile age, currently psychology and cross-disciplines experience the lack of methodology and absence of the system of practical methods that allow regulating negative behavior manifestations on the level of a person or group or even on the social level. One of the most prospective modern approaches for regulating of forms of destructive behavior is the activity relating to forming of legal awareness of a person (Deineka, & Zabarin, 2014).

Legal awareness includes two interrelated phenomena: law and awareness. Law is the code of norms and regulations that regulates behavior and stipulates legal effect depending on the person’s following the code or its violation. The awareness of a person is the combination of his (her) feelings and knowledge that help him (her) aware the surrounding world, other people and him(her)self. Public awareness through norms, regulations, values, traditions, ideals effects the personal awareness since our childhood and forms types of behavior and thinking (Abulkhanova, 2005). All the phenomena of legal reality also regulate the personal awareness. A person can understand them either does not understand, accept them either does not accept. Anyway, this process of such interaction results in forming of a certain type of awareness – legal awareness that has real basis, a certain independence and specific functions.

In national psychology within the framework of system approach legal awareness is regarded as a sphere of awareness reflecting legal activity in the form of legal knowledge and skills, estimation approach to law and its application, values and legal goals that regulate person’s behavior (Ratinov, 1981). Leal awareness can be considered as a direct way of law to public activity. Thus, compliance with the law and deviant behavior are the result of certain complex of properties and peculiarities of legal awareness (Ratinov, & Efremova, 1988).

In foreign psychology the problem of legal awareness is treated in the framework of studying of different factors of deviant behavior (Hirschi, & Gottfredson, 1983), forming of social receipts (Moscovici, 1987, Tapp, & Levine, 1977). Integrated models being developed; they study cognitive components (legal and moral judgments) and behavior as an interrelated system that influences person’s infringing behavior (Cohn, Bucolo, Rebellon, & Van Gundy, 2010).

The problem of person’s formation and development plays a specific role in the process of studying the problem of person’s asocial behavior. Many scientists agree with the opinion that legal awareness is developed in the process of legal socialization (Gulevich, 2004, 2010; Ratinov, 1981; Yasyukova, 2000; Tapp, & Levine, 1977 and others). A child acquires initial legal judgments at the stage of interacting with the first social institutions in his life (Auvyaert, 1981; Minkovskiy, 1982). Person’s moral qualities which are fundamental for normal development of legal awareness are established in child’s early childhood under the influence of family relations, traditions, norms, regulations, and style of upbringing (Gulevich, 2004). Legal awareness continues developing in the process of person’s growing-up, developing of person and subjectivity (Ratinov, 1981; Yasyukova, 2000). A person enriches his (her) legal sphere of awareness being included in more complex types of activity, and communication.

In early juvenile age in the process of legal socialization a special place is held by social institutions that interact with a person. We speak not only about families, but also about schools, colleges, institutions of higher education, leisure centers, labour organizations and groups, and others. Scientists hold the opinion that modern system of education and upbringing does not make enough influence on moral formation of a child. Moral formation is considered to be a basis for child’s legal development (Sochivko, 2011).

Rativov notices that norms, regulations, sanctions can be called an external factors determining person’s legal behavior. They make a certain influence on legal awareness of a person. Established individual value and regulations-based model which manifest in individual legal concept, norms, and standards of behavior can be referred to internal factors (Ratinov, & Efremova, 1988).

Such personal characteristics as responsibility, independence, personal integrity play significant role in the process of formation of legal awareness (Volovikova, 2004; Gulevich, 2004). The results of investigations show that a low level of moral development is observed among children whose parents do not give them the opportunity for making their own decisions and actions. Emotional well-being should also be added to some extend of freedom. Psychological traumas make a person stuck on early stages of moral development (Gulevich, 2010). The mechanism of interrelation of legal awareness and stable characteristics of a person is not obvious and needs in additional investigations.

Research Questions

The contemporary Russia strives for the development of state of law. Itdirectly depends on development of legal awareness of the young generation.

A young man with a developed legal awareness at all levels of structural components can be an active carrier of ideas of rights and freedoms, take active part in strengthening of law and increasing of the level of legal culture of population. Studying of the structure of person’s legal awareness is performed in the frameworks of system approach. Cognitive, emotional, and volatile components of legal awareness are interrelated and perform certain functions: cognitive, estimating, regulatory (Ratinov, 1981). The legal awareness of a person is s combination of interrelated legal knowledge, judgments, opinions and person’s attitude towards legal phenomena, legal goals and orientations (Krasnik, & Evstafeeva, 2014).

Lack of legal knowledge, inability to use them in everyday life causes the decrease of the level of young people’s legal awareness (Evstafeeva, 2015). The results of empiric research of structural components of young people’s legal awareness of young juvenile age have a high practical significance for teachers who are engaged in implementation of programs of legal education and upbringing in different educational institutions. Thus, we have a hypothesis of our work: there is a correlation between the level of formation of legal notions and attitude to legal regulation among young people of the early juvenile age.

Purpose of the Study

The goal of the research is to determine the correlation between the level of formation of legal notions and attitude to legal regulation young people of the early juvenile age. In conformity with the goal of the research the sample size is performed in the scope of 100 people (35 young men and 65 young women). The population for this research is represented by first-year students at the age of 17 – 18. The research was performed at the site of the Chelyabinsk State University in 2017.

Research Methods

The main methods for this research have become the methodology of person’s attitude towards legal regulation, including different mindsets, religions, traditions, ethical norms; methodology of estimation of level of formation (level of development and quality of development) of the system of legal notions among young people as an indicator of cognitive component of legal awareness (Gornostayev, 2002). The evaluation of formation of legal notions was performed according to several parameters: scope of notions, adequateness, compliance with rules of notions’ formation. The subject of the research obtained the highest score only when the notion was explained in full scope, and the number of significant characteristics did not include nonexisting or wrong characterictics (Gornostayev, 2002). Knowledge of such notions as ‘right’, ‘violation of law’, ‘law’, and ‘norm’ were evaluated. For mathematical treatment of date processing methods of descriptive statistics and correlation analysis (Pearson r-criterion) were used.


The results of the research have demonstrated that only 1.9% of young people who participated in the research are at the level of legal nihilism; they align themselves with moral and ethical norms as they understand them.

The contradictory and unformed level of legal awareness was demonstrated by 31.9% of students. Legal awareness can be marked by different content and can manifest in different ways in various spheres of life. Besides, students can adopt and approve a certain legal norm, but at the same time they can reject its manifestation in different spheres of law. If the level of legal awareness is formed very poorly in everyday life, a student is inconsistent and potentially able to launch conflicts because of the incapability to understand moral and ethical norms of a group, and impossibility to adopt another system of values. In social sphere poor level of legal awareness formation is characterized by passive civic position, social infantilism, helplessness, and expectation of benefits and help from the government and members of society. And finally, poor level of legal awareness formation in business sphere is characterized by orientation on personal relations to the damage of official duties.

The mostly formed level of legal awareness was demonstrated by 45.2% of students. At the same time they keep to negative attitude towards legal regulation and existing legislation. A conformed person acts in accordance with stereotypes of behavior; in his (her) everyday activity he (she) tries not to breach the law and different regulations, he (she) is reliable in business activity.

Fully formed legal awareness was demonstrated only by 17.3% of students. Students fully realize the necessity of legal regulation. They are reliable in business communication, tolerant to other moral and ethical values, are able to set relations with different social categories in spite of their nation or religion.

The resulted obtained during the research were below the medium level (х=3.75, where max 12). The participants included only one characteristic of a legal notion. The other indicators of the level of formation of legal notions were also demonstrated on the level below the medium. The scope of the notion was not sufficient, it means that not all the significant characteristics were included in the notion (x=1.12, where max = 4). Wrong indicators were included in the notion (x=1.68, where max=4). For example, the answer of a participant ‘norm is defined by a person by his (her) own discretion’. Low scores according to the indicator ‘rules of the formation of a notion’ were obtained (х=0.81, where max=4). The participants gave general notions or even substituted a notion by an example.

The correlation analysis gave us the opportunity to determine the correlation between the level of formation of legal notions and the attitude towards legal regulation among young people of early juvenile age. The positive attitude towards law and legal regulation in different spheres of life is directly connected with the level of formation of person’s legal notions. The higher level of formation and quality of legal notions, the more positive attitude to law and its practical application, the more tolerant he (she) is towards various cultural traditions, religions, and mindsets. There exists the direct correlation between ‘level of formation of legal notions’ and ‘attitude towards legal regulation’ (r=0.514; p=0.042); ‘scope of legal notions’ and ‘attitude towards legal regulation’ (r=0.704; p=0.002); ‘adequateness of legal notions’ and ‘attitude towards legal regulation’ (r=0.544; p=0.029). We did not discovered any correlation between the observance of the rules of the formation of legal notions and participants’ attitude towards legal regulation (r=0.376; p=0.151). Thus, we can conclude the following: the lower is the person’s level of formation of legal notions, the more negative is a person’s attitude towards legal regulation.


The results of the research have confirmed the hypothesis about the correlation between a person’s level of formation of legal notions and his (her) attitude towards legal regulation. The results obtained will contribute to development of the concept of prevention of asocial behavior. They will also be of great help in the process of development and implementation of group of actions aimed at formation of legal awareness among young people of early juvenile age. Moreover, the results of the research can be used in preventing of asocial orientation among young people of early juvenile age during educational and upbringing process. Since legal awareness is considered to be the basis and the source of legal activity of the young generation and internal regulator of legally-approved behavior, we believe the development of legal awareness among students is the main direction of educational activity. Thus, the scientific novelty of the work is concluded in determining a special correlation between cognitive and emotional structural components of a person’s legal awareness.


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Evgeniya, E. (2018). Attitude Of Young People Of Early Juvenile Age To Legal Regulation. In R. Valeeva (Ed.), Teacher Education - IFTE 2018, vol 45. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 0-0). Future Academy.