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Developmental Changes of Adolescents in High School

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As teenagers enter high school, most have entered puberty and have begun to physically mature. Puberty brings increased hormone production, which has multiple effects. Discuss.

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High school students experience confusion about relationships, especially in determining relationship goals. Males experience a tenfold increase in testosterone levels over a six month period, and females grow to rely on social factors such as friends to guide sexual behavior. While differing by gender, high school students begin achieving sexually maturity before becoming socially and psychologically mature. For these and reasons, teens in high school engage in unprotected sex and show infrequent use of contraception. In a 1995 survey, 18% of adolescent males and 29% of females reported having unprotected sex (Abma, 2001). Having unprotected sex is positively correlated with being retained in school (Abma, 2001).
Gender also influences how adolescents interact and behave in peer relationships. Females are more likely to experience jealously and conflict (leading to anxiety) in social relationships, while males focus on similar skills and interests when developing relationships with others (Abma, 2001; Snowman & Biehler, 2003) .

Different people also exert influence on high school teenage behavior. Parents and other adults have been shown to be more likely to influence teen's long-range plans for the future (Snowman & Bieler, 2003). An exception is parents ...

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