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more involved in extracurricular school activities. In addition, they are well aware of theirpopularity, and they are less lonely than their less popular classmates (Farmer et al., 2003;Zettergren, 2003; Becker & Luthar, 2007; Closson, 2009).In contrast, the social world of rejected and neglected adolescents is considerably less pleasant.They have fewer friends, engage in social activities less frequently, and have less contact withthe opposite sex. They see themselves—accurately, it turns out—as less popular, and they aremore likely to feel lonely. They may find themselves in conflicts with others, some of whichescalate into full-blown fights that require mediation (McElhaney, Antonishak, & Allen, 2008;Woodhouse, Dykas & Cassidy, 2012).What is it that determines status in high school? Men and women have different perceptions. Forexample, college men suggest that physical attractiveness is the most important factor indetermining high school girls’ status, whereas college women believe it is a high school girl’sgrades and intelligenceCONFORMITY.Whenever Aldos Henry said he wanted to buy a particular brand of sneakers or a certain style ofshirt, his parents complained that he was just giving in to peer pressure and told him to make uphis own mind about things.In arguing with Aldos, his parents were subscribing to a view of adolescence that is quiteprevalent in U.S. society: that teenagers are highly susceptible to peer pressure, the influence ofone’s peers to conform to their behavior and attitudes. Were his parents correct in saying that hewas a victim of peer pressure?peer pressure The influence of one’s peers to conform to their behavior and attitudesThe research suggests that in some cases, adolescents are highly susceptible to the influence oftheir peers. For instance, when considering what to wear, whom to date, and what movies to see,adolescents are apt to follow the lead of their peers. Wearing the right clothes, down to thecorrect brand of the right clothes, sometimes can be a ticket to membership in a popular group. Itshows you know what’s what. However, when it comes to many nonsocial matters, such aschoosing a career path or trying to solve a problem, adolescents are more likely to turn to anexperienced adult (Phelan, Yu, & Davidson, 1994).In short, particularly in middle and late adolescence, teenagers turn to those they see as expertson a given dimension. If they have social concerns, they turn to the people most likely to beexperts—their peers. If the problem is one about which parents or other adults are most likely tohave expertise, teenagers tend to turn to them for advice and are most susceptible to theiropinions (Young & Ferguson, 1979; Perrine & Aloise-Young, 2004).Overall, then, it does not appear that susceptibility to peer pressure suddenly soars duringadolescence. Instead, adolescence brings about a change in the people to whom an individualconforms. Whereas children conform fairly consistently to their parents during childhood, inadolescence, conformity shifts to the peer group, in part because pressures to conform to peersincrease as adolescents seek to establish their identity apart from their parents. (See also theFrom Research to Practice box.)21