Understanding Your Teen: Developmental Changes During Adolescence

by | Jan 30, 2020

Middle Adolescence 15-16 years

Movement Towards Independence

  • Self-involvement, alternating unrealistically high expectations and poor self-concept
  • Complains that parents interfere with independence
  • Extremely concerned with appearance and with one’s own body
  • Lowered opinion of parents, withdrawal from them
  • Strong emphasis on peer group
  • Periods of sadness

Study and interests:

  • Intellectual interests gain importance

Development of Ideals:

  • Greater capacity for setting goals
  • Interest in moral reasoning

Late Adolescence 17-19 years

Movement Towards Independence

  • Firmer identity
  • Ability to delay gratification
  • Ability to think ideas through
  • Stable interests
  • Greater emotional stability
  • Ability to make independent decisions

Study and interests:

  • More defined work habits
  • A higher level of concern for the future
  • Thoughts about one’s role in life


  • Capable of useful insight
  • Acceptance of social institutions and cultural traditions

Questions? Let’s chat!


Weil College Advising

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