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Paper Topic:

Human Growth & Development- Adolescent Case Study


Adolescence is the period between twelve to eighteen years where physical and psychological changes take place . In this stage , the adolescents begin to accept their physique and gender role , establish relationship with age mates , become emotionally independent from their parents and families , develop intellectual and social skills , and prepare for a career and family life

Human development is a continuous process . It does not end when a person reaches physical maturity . It continues throughout life Developmental psychologists seek to describe and analyze the regularities of human development across the

entire life span and focuses on those aspects of development that make us similar to one another (Atkinson , 1993

This will focus on the case study of an adolescent in relation to the cognitive , psychosexual , psychosocial , ego , and moral reasoning theories

Case Study

Brian , a fifteen year old student was caught bullying his classmates and forcing them to give him their money . In the interview , Brian mentioned that he is involved with a group of teenage boys who has asked him to collect money to defray the hospital bills of one of their group member 's mother who was diagnosed with terminal cancer . When he was caught by school authorities , Brian blamed the society 's failure to meet the medical and health care needs of the poor and he is only doing what is best for the sick and dying person . Brian is performing well in his studies and attends classes regularly . He is a basketball varsity player and has no record of using prohibited drugs . He however expresses his desire to live independently apart from his parents when he graduates from high school as they resent his relationship with his girlfriend . While in college , he aims to get a college varsity scholarship and a part-time job . When asked if he thinks it is right to rob money from others , he felt that what he did was wrong but he wants to be fully accepted by his friends . He also mentioned that his friend 's mother is going to die soon and he could not stand to see her suffer

Cognitive Development

The progress in the cognitive areas for the adolescents usually accompanies the changes in physical development . Jean Piaget 's theory of cognitive development describes how people perceive , think and acquire understanding of their world through the interaction and influence of genetic and learning factors . Piaget believes that all people go through the same four stages , e .g . sensorimotor preoperational , concrete operational , and formal operational stages (Santrock , 1990 . Each of these stages is more advanced than the preceding stage because it involves new reasoning and thinking abilities . From twelve years old through adulthood , a person is in the formal operational stage which is Piaget 's fourth cognitive stage . In this stage , an adolescent like Brian develop thinking and reasoning similar to typical adults . Brian encounters new worlds of abstract concepts and discusses hypothetical situations and problems . He discusses ideas such as freedom , unity and love , and become more...

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