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Comparative Study
, 37 (3), 351-61

Seeds of Wisdom: Adolescents' Knowledge and Judgment About Difficult Life Problems

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  • PMID: 11370911
Comparative Study

Seeds of Wisdom: Adolescents' Knowledge and Judgment About Difficult Life Problems

M Pasupathi et al. Dev Psychol.

Abstract

The present study examined adolescents' wisdom-related knowledge and judgment with a heterogeneous sample of 146 adolescents (ages 14-20 years) and a comparison sample of 58 young adults (ages 21-37 years). Participants responded to difficult and ill-defined life dilemmas; expert raters evaluated these responses along 5 wisdom criteria. Our findings confirmed that in contrast to adulthood, adolescence is a major period for normative age-graded development in knowledge about difficult life problems. Adolescents performed at lower levels than young adults but also demonstrated substantial age increments in performance. As expected, adolescents' performance varied as a function of criterion and gender. These results hold implications for research on adolescent development and for the development of wisdom-related knowledge and judgment.

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