PSY_214_chapter_13_notes_part_2 - PSY 214 Adolescent...

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PSY 214 – Adolescent Psychology Chapter 13 Notes – part 2 There is so much material in chapter 13 that this is the second of the 2 parts of the notes for it. Delinquency is the next issue to consider. There are a couple of noteworthy things in the text. One is that almost 80% of adolescents report having committed at least one criminal act before they are 20 years old. Fortunately, within that group, more than 80% have committed only relatively minor offenses such as someone’s house or stealing something trivial – and they never progress to more serious crimes. This is what the book refers to as “adolescence-limited delinquency” and it may be an outgrowth of rebellion or thrill-seeking that kids eventually grow out of. While their behavior is unacceptable and should be followed by appropriate consequences, it probably does not indicate any serious underlying pathology – in contrast to young people who begin having problems very early in their lives and commit more serious and more frequent crimes as adolescents. These kids do need some professional intervention. In Missouri, the juvenile justice system underwent considerable changes in 1994 that made it much easier to certify young offenders as adults within the legal system. Currently, a child of any age who commits one of seven crimes must undergo a certification hearing at which a judge decides whether the child will be prosecuted in the juvenile system or the adult system. The seven crimes are first and second degree murder, first degree assault, forcible rape, forcible sodomy, first degree robbery and distribution of drugs. If a juvenile is certified as an adult and is found guilty of one of these crimes, he/she could serve time in a juvenile detention facility until the age of 21, then be transferred to an adult prison to serve out the rest of his/her sentence. In most jurisdictions, however, a very small number of juvenile offenders are actually certified as adults so most remain in the juvenile system with various detention and treatment options. In contrast to the externalizing problems discussed so far, internalizing problems center around depression and anxiety. You probably know that depression is the most frequently diagnosed mental disorder, at least in the U.S., and that it rarely occurs before adolescence, although it certainly can. Again, it’s important to examine the frequency and intensity of depression in order to figure out how best to respond to it. The lowest level, intensity-wise, of depression is “depressed mood” – i.e. just feeling sad – and it reaches its peak rates of occurrence between the ages of about 15 and 17. This kind of depression merits concern on the part of adults, but it probably does not need clinical or medical intervention, unless it becomes very frequent. The other 2 types of depression are far more serious and far less common, and they do require professional intervention.
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This note was uploaded on 12/17/2009 for the course PSY 214 taught by Professor Dr.judyleach during the Spring '07 term at St. Louis CC.

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PSY_214_chapter_13_notes_part_2 - PSY 214 Adolescent...

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