Understanding Adolescents for Helping Professionals

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Understanding Adolescents for Helping Professionals

SKU# 9780826125064

Author: Avidan Milevsky PhD, LCPC


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Promotes an in-depth understanding of adolescent development that can be immediately applied to effective treatment

Adolescence is a distinct and complex stage of development, and successful interventions with this population require an in-depth understanding of the many forces affecting them. This is a practical, thorough, yet concise survey of adolescent development for early career professionals in psychology, mental health counseling, social work, marriage and family therapy, education, and nursing. Based on in-depth theoretical and empirical understanding of adolescent physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development, the text demonstrates how this knowledge can be applied immediately to treating adolescents in any setting. The only book of its kind, it is a welcome alternative to purely clinical books because its strategic focus is on understanding normal adolescent development and appreciating the crucial difference between adolescent developmental issues versus clinical issues. Comprehending this important difference is an integral aspect of successful interventions with adolescents.

The book provides an overview of historical perspectives, major theories and research, and current best practices in the profession. It addresses topics in adolescent development, with a particular emphasis on how physical, cognitive, and socioemotional developments interact in an integrative process. Particularly helpful features include a section in each chapter, "Adolescent Development in the Real World," which highlights interviews with professionals who, in their daily work, apply the concepts discussed in the text. The "In Their Own Words" feature provides interviews with adolescents from various gender and ethnic groups, providing first-person accounts of how specific issues are manifested in life. Other hallmarks of this text include easy-to-understand language, discussion-oriented critical thinking tasks, and suggestions for further reading. Readers will come away with a deep theoretical and empirical understanding of adolescent development, as well as how to apply and implement these concepts in any adolescent or adolescent-related mental health setting.


  • Presents concise yet in-depth coverage of adolescent development with a focus on applying this knowledge in practice
  • Facilitates a deep theoretical and empirical understanding of the key concepts in physical, cognitive, and socioemotional adolescent development
  • Emphasizes the interaction of physical, cognitive, and socioemotional development
  • Includes interviews with professionals who demonstrate how they apply the book's concepts in their work with adolescents
  • Provides first-person accounts from adolescents from different cultural, ethnic, and sexual orientations

Product Details 

  • Publication Date December 03, 2014
  • Page Count 232
  • Product Form Paperback / softback
  • ISBN 13 9780826125064
  • EISBN 9780826125071

Table of Contents 



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1. Understanding Adolescent Development

What Is Development?

Why Do We Study Adolescent Development?

The Study of Adolescent Development: Past, Present, and Future

2. Adolescent Developmental Theories

Intrapsychic Theories

Cognitive Theories

Behavioral and Environmental Theories

Biological Theories

Integrative Theories

3. Research and Practice in Adolescent Development

The Importance of Research-Based Practice

The Research Method

Evaluating the Science and Ethics of Research

Careers in Adolescent Development

4. The Process of Puberty

The Beginning of Puberty

The Timing of Puberty

Off-Time Puberty

5. Body and Brain Development

External and Internal Physical Changes

The Brain

6. Health and Nutrition

Overall Health


Diet and Nutrition

7. Cognition, Thinking, and School

Piaget's Formal Operational Stage

Thinking in Context

Educating Adolescents

8. Psychosocial Development

Interacting Forces

Understanding the Self



9. The Social Network and the Modern World


Friends and Enemies

Dating and Love

TV and the Media



10. Adolescent Problems

Externalizing Problems

Internalizing Problems

Book Summary



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