Course description

HD 2170 introduces students to the major theoretical perspectives, research findings, research methods, applications, and controversies in the study of human development during the period of adolescence and the transition to emerging adulthood. The main focus is on individual development, but we view this development from an interdisciplinary perspective. The emphasis in the course is on psychological development, but we also will draw on related fields, such as sociology, anthropology, biology, neuroscience, and education. Within psychology, we will be looking at adolescence and emerging adulthood from the standpoints of developmental, cognitive, social, personality, clinical, and biological psychology. There will be some use of statistics in the course, but sophisticated knowledge of statistics is not required. This is a second-level course, so the emphasis is on creative, analytical, practical, and wise understanding and application of concepts of development.

Outcome 1: Understand the theories and research which describe the fundamental changes of adolescence, including social/personality, emotional, biological, and cognitive transitions.

Outcome 2: Comprehend and apply theoretical perspectives and research findings regarding the issues in psychosocial development which come to the forefront in adolescence and emerging adulthood, such as identity, autonomy, intimacy, sexuality and achievement, as well as psychosocial problems.

Outcome 3: Understand theories and research findings that examine the major contexts in which development in adolescence occurs, including families, peers, schools, work, and leisure/mass media.

Outcome 4: Apply what they have learned in this course to their own psychological development, past and present.

Outcome 5: Think creatively, analytically, practically, and wisely about adolescence and the transitions that occur during this period.


HD 1130 or PSYCH 1101

Summer 2024: Online course

Casey Carr
Casey Carr
Associate Dean of Students Emeritus for mental health awareness, Cornell University