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Faculty - Developmental Psychology

Jaana Juvonen [Edit Page]


Developmental Psychology

Contact Information

Office: 2291C FH

Phone: (310) 825-8293


Research and Teaching Interests

I study young adolescents relationship's with their peers, and
how these relationships are related to the development and
adaptive functioning of youth. My research is guided by a
social-cognitive theoretical approach. This means that I
study peer relationships by investigating children's views of
themselves, attributions of their social interactions and experiences,
as well as their peer perceptions and attributions of others.

The main topics that I have investigated over the years
include the study of social motivational analyses of perceived
deviance and peer rejection, social adjustment of children
with special needs, development of self-presentation
strategies, perceived peer group norms and public behavior of
young teens, and peer harassment in school. The findings of
some of the research we have conducted has led me to
examine the development of some questionable peer group norms
and values that seem to surface at the time when students
transfer to middle school: namely, the belief that one should
not study hard to succeed in school and that aggressive
schoolmates are "cool". How much of this shift in perceptions
of peer group norms is due to developmental, as opposed to
context-related, changes (i.e., changes in the size and
structure of schools, evaluation practices, etc.) is a
question that I continue to investigate.

For the past few years, I have focused my research on bullying
or peer harassment. With the assistance of funding from NSF and
the W. T. Grant Foundation, Dr. Sandra Graham in the Department
of Education and I conducted a large longitudinal study on peer
harassment in urban middle schools. This study examines
both the antecedents (e.g., pubertal timing, ethnic composition of
a school) and personal consequences (e.g.,psychological adjustment
and school adaptation) of peer harassment across three years of
middle school. This research involves an intensive follow-up of
approximately 2,000 ethnically diverse youth in the urban Los Angeles
area. The design of the study with 6 waves of data represents a labor-
intensive project but also provides many training opportunities for both
undergraduate and graduate students.

Biosketch/Curriculum Vitae


Jaana Juvonen's Publications  pdf icon

Representative Publications

Faculty Awards