Updated 2009-06-04 12:39

Identity Formation

Erikson's Psychosocial TheoryAdolescence is a stage of life where an identity crisis is resolved by identity formation.
Smith and Crawford (1986)Supports Erikson. 60% of secondary school pupils reported at least on instance of suicidal thoughts.
Kahn (1985)Supports Erikson. Students who had been assessed as low in identity development had less success in later relationships.
Siddique and D'Arcy (1984) 2/3 of adolescents interviewed showed mild or no psychological distress.
Marcia's theory of identity formationBuilt on Erikson's theory by identifying four statuses in identity development, differing in levels of crisis and commitment.
Waterman (1985)Supports Marcia. Found that as age increased, identity diffusion decreased/identity achievement increased.
Kroger (1996)Supports Marcia. Identity achievers functioned better under stress than those still in moratorium, who were more anxious + avoided intimate relationships.
Meilman (1979)Challenges Marcia. Identity achievement comes later on than predicted and may not be permanent (Only 50% by age 24)
Archer (1982)Reported a simplification in the stages. Only 5% in just 1 stage, 90% in two stages.
Coleman's Focal TheoryStress occurs when adolescents have to deal with too many issues at one time.
Coleman + Henry (1990)Most adolescents navigate adolescents by putting some issues on hold.
Eccles (1993)Alternative to Focal Theory. Stress may occur due to mismatch between adolescent's developing needs and the role offered to them in western society.

Relationships with Parents and Peers

Cooper (1998)Autonomy: Adolescents who are securely attached have fewer problems.
Waterman (1982)Identity formation: Parental style affects development of identity. Domineering parents -> identity foreclosure, democratic parent -> moratorium/achievement.
Archer and Waterman (1994)Identity formation: Weak connectedness with parents -> Identity confusion stage.
Steinberg and Morris (2001)Conflict: authoritarian parents have more conflicts.
Montemayor (1982)Conflict: On average, adolescents have conflict with parents every 3 days, for 11 minutes.
Montemayor (1993)Two way process. Fathers less stressed if closer to adolescent children.
Benin (1997)Conflict: Parents may be cause of the conflict - marital dissatisfaction highest in marriage with adolescents.
Larsen (1991)Cultural differences - Indian relationship with parents is closer.
Frey + Rothlisberger (1996)Adolescents have twice as many relationships with peers than parents.
Ainsworth (1989)Peers serve 4 functions: Source of intimacy, feedback on social behaviour, source of social influence, provide attachment relationships.
Piaget (1932)Peer relationships more egalitarian than parent relationships.
Blos (1967)Autonomy: Peers act as a secure base/way station to independence and help adolescents avoid loneliness.
Kirchler (1991)Autonomy: Failure to develop peer relationships may lead to difficulty forming adult relationships in future.
Steinberg + Silverberg (1986)Autonomy of ppts increased with increased peer involvements.
Erikson (1968)Identity formation: Peers help us explore new ideologies.
Brown + Lohr (1987)Identity formation: Adolescents who did not belong to social cliques had lower self esteem.,
BrownPeer conformity: Adolescents reported more pressure to conform to peer norms than family activities.
Bendt (1979)Conformity greater for pro social behaviour.
Ryan and Lynch (1989)Peer relationships: Individual differences - adolescents with democratic parents rely less on their peers.

Cultural differences in adolescent behaviour

Gilani (1995)Autonomy: Found that in Asian families, family comes first and teenage girls were expected to conform rather than become independent.
Bacon (1963)Achievement: In collectivist cultures eg Mexico, parents place more value on obedience and responsibility than individual achievements.
Mead (1928)'Storm and stress' not universal. In Samoa, rites of passage into adulthood eradicate transitional period so less stress.
White and Burke (1987)Formation of identity is easiest with integration into society.
Duncan (1994)Adolescents who had experienced poverty had lower IQ.