Week 2: lecture 1
social transitions to adulthood are unclear; ages 18-21 undefined
most of history of adolescents is about males, or well-to-do white females
g Stanley hall: underneath all the passivity, there is the raging seething
turmoil caused by biology
stein & reiser: study on how boys’ education, their interaction with peers, and
relations with family influence their experience with the semenarche- first
Retrospective study- camp counselors recalling their experience, not
reporting what is currently happening.
Used questionnaire and interview; found discrepancy btw the two.
Findings: most boys reported surprise at their first ejaculation, half of the
boys were confused, some felt happy. All the boys had taken a health ed
class, but a quarter reported that the frst ejaculation was not discussed. It it
was, it was around 8
grade, after most boys had already experienced it.
Most told no one when it happened.
Case: being comfortable with who I am:
Illustrates different perspectives: betsy had a lot of stress from moving and
changing cultures, shes unhappy bc she cant go to florida (parents wont let
her), loses faith in parents bc they changed their minds. Stressed that she
has to tell her friends she cant go. Fits hall’s “storm and stress” theory in
terms of disagreements, but you don’t see the inevitable biological model.
Modified storm and stress theory states that there is storm and stress but it
is not necessarily biological or inevitable. However, conflict with parents,
mood disruptions, and risk behavior are associated with it. Betsy’s case is
a good example of this theory.
physical changes in adolescents
development in primary sex characteristics in adol
hormones- endocrine system
hypothalamus- part of the brain that controls pituitary gland
pituitary gland- controls hormones
gonads- releases hormones
in adol, there is a huge growth spurt, they are growing as fast as a
toddler. Only in infancy is growth faster.
Grls start growth spurt at 10.5, hips broaden. Boys start at 12.5
and go until 14.5- shoulders broaden. Overall growth stops at
16 and grls stop at 17. but there are boys who still grow in
There is a synchronicity in growth, diff parts of body grow at diff
Growth spurt starts with extremities: head, hands, feet
Next are arms and legs
Finally, torso and shoulders
Bc of this, many adol are akward