chapter  8
18 Pages

A social psychologist’s perspective on future directions

The many faces of Youth Studies
WithJames Côté

This chapter argues that a paradigm shift in Youth Studies — the parent field of Adolescent Psychology — requires that all of those who study young people recognize their common goal, namely, to improve the lives and future prospects of the young people whom researchers study. It lays out a plan for a unified field by first examining the history of Youth Studies, beginning with Hall's (in)famous tome that pronounced the study of adolescence to be a valid scientific field. The personality and social structure perspective (PSSP) proposes that few interrelated levels of analysis are necessary for a comprehensive theory of human behaviour. The chapter concludes with a series of suggestions for overcoming the biases, while recognizing differences in the epistemologies, politics, and value priorities, in order for us to find common projects that a unified Youth Studies field can undertake.