ERIC Number: ED255786
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Apr
Reference Count: 0
The Effects of Friendships on Students' Adjustment after the Transition to Junior High School.
Berndt, Thomas J.; Hawkins, Jacquelyn A.
The transition to junior high school can be a positive step toward increasing maturity, and a stressful period of adaptation as well. To investigate the contribution of friendships to children's adjustment after the transition to junior high school, students (N=101) from four elementary schools were tested during the spring of sixth grade, in the fall of seventh grade at the junior high school, and in the spring of seventh grade. Measures of adjustment, self-esteem, school attitudes, and friendships were obtained from structured questionnaires, individual interviews, teacher ratings, and school records. Scores on the Perceived Competence Scale, social self-esteem subscale, decreased significantly after the transition to junior high school, and did not increase between fall and spring of seventh grade. Attitudes toward school as measured by the Classroom Environment Scale also decreased during the transition and did not improve in later testing. Student responses to open-ended questions about their feelings toward junior high improved from spring of sixth grade to fall of seventh grade. Although students reported fewer close friendships after the transition than before, the quality of student friendships seemed to increase after the transition. There were no significant correlations between friendship stability and the measures of adjustment, but there were significant correlations between measures of friends' contact and closeness and measures of adjustment. The findings suggest that the formation of close friendships during the early part of seventh grade could contribute to students' adjustment. Thirteen references are listed. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Grant (W.T.) Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (69th, Chicago, IL, March 31-April 4, 1985).