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Helping Adolescents Thrive

Adia Gooden, Ph.D. • March 01, 2015

Adolescence is often viewed negatively — as a difficult time of transition that exposes youth to a range of risk factors. Indeed, research has demonstrated that children are at increased risk for drug and alcohol use, sexual risk behavior, and physical fights as they transition into adolescence (Brooks, Harris, Thrall, Woods, et al. 2002).  However, while adolescents face increased risk factors, most do not succumb to them.  

References & Citations

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Benson, P. L., Scales, P. C., Hamilton, S. H., & Sesma, A. Jr. (2006). Positive youth development: Theory, research, and applications.  In W. Damon, & R. M. Lerner (Eds.), Handbook of child psychology, Vol. 1 (6th ed., pp. 894-941). New York: Wiley.

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Brook, J. S., & Pahl, K. (2005). The protective role of ethnic and racial identity and aspects of an Africentric orientation against drug use among African American young adults.  The Journal of Genetic Psychology, 166(3), 329-345.

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Gooden, A. S.  (2013).  Individual and community factors associated with thriving among African American adolescents in the context of stressors. College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations, Paper 59.

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Scales, P. C., Benson, P. L., Leffert, N., & Blyth, D. A. (2000). Contribution of developmental assets to the prediction of thriving among adolescents. Applied Developmental Science, 4(1), 27-46.

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Woods, L., & Jagers, R. (2003). Are Cultural Values Predictors of Moral Reasoning in African American Adolescents? Journal of Black Psychology, 29(1), 102-118.