ERIC Number: ED314656
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Conflict between Friends During Early Adolescence: Sources, Strategies, and Outcomes.
Spradling, Vicky Y.; And Others
Friendships of early adolescence are generally accepted as having special significance for psychological development. This study was conducted to examine the sources of conflict between friends during early adolescence; to assess the social-cognitive developmental level of early adolescents; and to explore the relationships among sources of friendship conflict, social-cognitive developmental level, and outcome measures of self-esteem, self-perceived social skills, and social competence. Data were obtained through structured interviews with 88 sixth-graders. A taxonomy of nine conflict categories was developed from spontaneous reports of friendship conflicts. The salience in early adolescence of 12 common sources of friendship conflicts suggested by the literature was assessed. Responses to two hypothetical social problem-solving dilemmas were coded for social-cognitive developmental level based on Selman's (1984) Interpersonal Negotiation Strategies Interview. The findings revealed gender differences: girls' friendships appeared to be more exclusive, committed, and concerned with issues of trust, intimacy, and aspects of the emotional connection than were friendships of boys. Boys' expressed friendship concerns seemed more focused on issues dealing with autonomy and individuality. Higher social-cognitive developmental levels were associated with higher self-perceived social skills and self-esteem. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (97th, New Orleans, LA, August 11-15, 1989).