4-H stakeholders have argued for years about the merits of individual competition versus team cooperation. Although a 1988 National 4-H Competition Task Force Report called for more research on competition and cooperation, our Journal of Extension search found only two articles with children's empirical data from 1975 to 2001. In this, the first apparent research-based comparison with a large sample of 4-H and non-4-H members in a mountain state, children preferred both cooperation and competition. Furthermore, cooperation rather than competition was the way to build self-worth. Eight practical recommendations are offered to 4-H/youth development program leaders, specialists, volunteers, and parents.

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