ADOLESCENT DEVELOPMENT 5
DevelopmentalStage of Adolescence: Age 13 to 18
DevelopmentalStage of Adolescence: Age 13 to 18
Physicalchanges that occur during adolescence
Duringadolescence, as peopledevelop, thereare some common physical changes inboys and girls and those that are different for each sex. The commonphysical changes among the gendersinclude increases in heightand increases in weight. Due to the underlying metabolic changes,youths between thirteen years and eighteen years increase in mass(Brooks-Gunn,& Peterson, 2013).There is also a growth and increase in hair in private parts andunderarms.The individuals increase production of sweat due to increasedrespiration and the hair and skins increase in oiliness. The uniquechanges inmale adolescents include increasesin the sizes of testicles and penises, the growthof facial hair, development ofdeepmasculinevoices and an increasein muscle masses that causes widening of chests. Females developbreast sizes and begin menstruating, hips widen,and their reproductive systems develop to maturity (Brooks-Gunn,& Peterson, 2013).
Individualsundergodevelopment socially and the changes include the increased need forlove. Adolescents make close friends that they socialize with. Due tothe closeness, peer influence is a common result of the development(Goodwin,2015).During early adolescence, individuals may show childish behavior aspart of the identity crisis they undergo. Youths of this age bracketalso become rebellious to the parents as they seek to become sociallyautonomous. As the development progresses with maturity, individualsmay begin to get conscious about their appearance to other people inthe community. Sexuality too gains more importance to theindividuals as they try to discover their true sexual orientation.Adolescents in the middle of the period, switch between relationshipsmore rapidly. The youths of this age bracket tend to show more fearand care about the opposite sex and concern themselves with theirsexual appearance and love (Goodwin,2015).During late adolescence, youths of about eighteen years of age striveto be accepted in social setups and cultural. They also regulatetheir self-esteem (Goodwin,2015).
Duringearly adolescence, children engage in abstract thinking. They,therefore, think of the possibilities of life. They consider severalperspectives and form their ideas from existing principles. Thecognitive development happens at different rates depending on theindividual. Each child creates their world of understanding andlogic. This cognitive ability is usually affected by the highemotions of adolescents, hence impairing their judgement. Youthsbegin resisting authority as a result of their cognitive growth andbegin expressing their thoughts in their way. During middleadolescence, the children’s experience in the cognitivedevelopmental changes increases with their improved decision making(Goodwin,2015).Their ideas develop in global perspectives as they mature towardslate adolescence. The children make their personal plans that arelong term and think of their relevance to the society. The improvedthinking and judgemental abilities improve relationships and helpthem develop unique identities. In late adolescence, individualsfocus on adult thoughts such as career goals and become lessself-centred(Goodwin, 2015).
Erikson’stheory of development
Thetheoryisbasedon an eight stage psychosocial development of individuals. In thisproject, interest would be inthe adolescent phaseof development (Arnett,2014). According to Erikson, adolescents undergo an identity crisis.The theory supposes that during adolescence, there is a struggle fora connection between the earlierstages and identityand subsequent stages that may include the adultcharacter(Arnett,2014). During this stage of growth, individuals are confused aboutbeing faithful to their identities or roles in the society.Individuals according to this theory are in a dilemma between beingwhat they desire to be and achieving what the societiesrequire them to be. According to Erikson, adolescents avoidcommitments so that they are not severelyaffected by their decisions in the future. The theory supposes thatthe youths should be allowedroom to experiment torealize the real selves in terms of identity awareness and emotionalbearing.The experiences of individuals during adolescence may determine theperson’s ability to maintain their ego and moral standing eventhough it may be against the societal expectations (Arnett,2014).
Impactof cultural factorson adolescent development
Cultureis a community’s way of life. It is shared and learnt by members.Cultures influenceall aspects of people’s lives. During adolescence,individuals develop their unique ways of life. These include beliefsand interactions with social,culturaland family environments (Arnett,2014). Therefore, the beliefs of a given culture towards a particularissue may impact an adolescent in both positive and negative waysduring their development. For instance, a culture that encouragesearlymarriagemay deny the individuals from that particular community a chance toexperiment and,therefore,understand themselves. In this case, the culture would havenegatively affected the lives of the people of that community. Inanother case, a culture may allow individuals more autonomy and,therefore,create a sense of self-sufficiencyby encouraging teens to have part time jobs. This may allowindividuals of that culture to self-relianceand,therefore,proper development (Arnett,2014).
Arnett,J. J. (2014). 4 Identity Development from Adolescence to EmergingAdulthood: What We Know and (Especially) Don’t Know. TheOxford Handbook of Identity Development, 53.
Brooks-Gunn,J., & Peterson, A. C. (Eds.). (2013). Girlsat puberty: Biological and psychosocial perspectives.Springer Science & Business Media.
Goodwin,C. J. (2015). Ahistory of modern psychology.John Wiley & Sons.