Psychosocial Adversities and Timing of Adolescent Transitions: A Comparison of the Former East and West Germanies.Reportar como inadecuado

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This study was conducted to examine the timing of adolescent transitions. Its first aim was to investigate the hypothesis that cumulated family adversities during childhood would predict earlier transitions in domains such as behavioral autonomy and friendship formation during adolescence. Subjects (N=1,631) were adolescents between the ages of 13 and 19 and their parents came from two different parts of the country, the former East and West Germany. This population allowed for the study's second aim, to compare effects of adversities across parts of the country that for decades were governed under different political systems. Six classes of risk factors were assessed, covering the time period before the age of 9 had been reached by the study adolescents: loss of a parent (due to divorce or death), serious illness (own or person close to self), residence change, school problems (failing a grade), unemployment of parent, and unskilled occupation of father (or mother in single-parent families). The timing of eight issues of normative psychosocial development was assessed in the areas of behavioral autonomy, opposite-sex friendship, and aspects of identity. The results revealed that, as hypothesized, groups high in cumulated adversities at the prepubertal stage showed earlier transitions to more adult behaviors in various normative issues of adolescent development. This was true for both regions of the country. The differences between adolescents low and high in adversities were more prevalent and pronounced among females, particularly those from the East. (Contains 6 figures and 10 references.) (NB)

Descriptors: Adolescent Development, Adolescents, Cultural Influences, Foreign Countries, Individual Differences, Sex Differences, Time

Autor: Silbereisen, Rainer K.; And Others


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