Sample Psychology Coursework Paper on Effect of Physical Development on Adolescents

Effect of Physical Development on Adolescents

The case study is developed from an adolescent male aged 14 years from African American cultural background. In the case, the adolescent has been defined as the “period of development among the youth that starts at puberty and ends at the emerging of adulthood where the typical age ranges from twelve years of age to eighteen years” (Çaglar, 2009, p. 407).  During this period, there are numerous physical milestones that can be predicted with ease among the youths. The paper would analyze the physical effects of a male adolescent from Black American culture, and it would relate the physical effects on personal characters, sexuality, relationships, self-concepts and the influence of culture.

Description of Character/Physical Development

The characters of the male under the study were affected by the adolescent’s period in diverse ways. For instance, as a result of experiencing early maturing, the confidence level was boosted and hence became more confidence. This was caused by the fact that the boy became stronger physically as compared with his peers, increased his height speedily which contributed significantly to the development his confidence character. The young male adult also changed the character to be a drug abuser and was also involved in sexual activities at an early age of 14 years. The character also changed, and he became more independent and hence becoming popular among his peers. The boy at the age of 14 years also became defiant and hence started conflicting with the parents. He as well developed the characters of bullying other young boys which were as a result of developing aggressive character due to adolescent influence. Most of the behaviors that were observable in the young male adult under the study involved a lot of taking risks until he reached the early adulthood period. The risky behavior that developed in him included the use of weapons, drugs abuse and being involved in the cruel activities that were against the school rules (Berzonsky, 2008).

Physical Development Effects on Sexuality

Adolescent is the age that is used in exploring and understanding sexuality. It is described as a phase that significant changes during which the developments of sexuality commence and continue to happen until the early adulthood. The physical developments had certain effects on his sexuality. These effects include growth spurt during the period of adolescence. The observable rate of growth of this young male adult was at a high rate and had a major landmark in his developments of male sexuality. The growth spurt during the adolescent was triggered by hormonal changes especially the hormones that affect enlargement of male sexual organs. The male adult also became heavier as a result of increased body size and enlargements of body parts. Broadening of shoulders and body muscles that form the masculine appearance of a male gender is also a major effect on sexuality. The changing in the voice causing him to have a deep voice of a male gender was also an observable physical development on the male growth during the adolescent period. The young adult also developed hair on the face forming beards and mustache where the body started to form a typical masculine shape that is linked to the male gender (Berk, 2012).

Physical Development Effects on Relationships

During the adolescence period, the male child relationship changes to a great extent and as a result tends to behave differently towards the close peers, parents and relatives members. Since the adolescents interests in sexual relationships are highly affected by the growth hormones, the male child finds themselves being attracted to the members of the opposite sex. The boys in such a situation tend to seek attention from girls ad start developing sexual desires towards the opposite gender (Berk, 2012). The boy child under the study was as well affected in a similar way where he became defiant to the parents and started seeking more attention from girls and peers. Just like other boys he was developing and exploring sexual identity and hence started to have romantic relationships and inviting the opposite sex genders for dates. The relationship with parents hence changed since he thought of them being a hindrance to their feelings, attitude and assumptions of being invulnerable and specialness. The relationship with friends also changes and the boy became more involved in seeking new experiences with the peers and hence ended up getting involved in more risk-taking behavior (Balkin, Perepiczka, Whitely, & Kimbrough, 2009).

Physical Development Effects on Self-Concept

Self-concept is can be defined as a factor that is used as evidence in evaluating adolescents behaviors concerning the things they consider successful or important in their different fields. Different challenges that young adults experience have high chances of lowering self-concept and hence end up developing negative self-concept during adolescence period. Maladaptive behaviors and emotions have been cited to have played a significant role in causing negative self-concept among the adolescents. The male boy being an African American child had a low self-concept, and this has high chances of causing different problems in the life of adolescents. This is because the young adult can wrongly interpret their self-worth, for instance, being born an Africa-American culture caused the boy child to consider himself as hailing from a minority culture (Çaglar, 2009).

Influence of Culture

Culture has a lot of influence on the adolescent’s change of behaviors, especially when searching for the identity. An Africa American boy child was exposed to a culture that faces a lot of challenges that are linked to race and prejudice issues. The boy after the exposure in his early adulthood life tried to search for his identity in a culture that he felt it was being stereotyped with all manners of crimes and hence ended up feeling disrespected. The reaction hence contributed to the development of feelings of anger towards the society, and this affected the adulthood life. As a result of being connected to African American culture caused the male child to respond in a negative way towards these challenges. In fact, it has been proven by scholars that the imposed discrimination and prejudice have caused the male youth of color to develop negative identities that have resulted in the development of deviant behavior. Culture has great influence on adolescents and in African American adolescent resulted to the poor psychological functioning as a result of racial prejudice based on cultural backgrounds (Bennett, 2006).


Balkin, R. S., Perepiczka, M., Whitely, R., & Kimbrough, S. (2009). The relationship of sexual values and emotional awareness to sexual activity in young adulthood. Adultspan: Theory Research & Practice, 8(1), 17-28.

Bennett, M. D., Jr. (2006). Culture and context: A study of neighborhood effects on racial socialization and ethnic identity content in a sample of African-American adolescents. Journal of Black Psychology, 32(4), 479-500.

Berk, L. E. (2012). Development through the lifespan (Laureate Education, Inc., custom ed.). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.

Berzonsky, M. D. (2008). Identity formation: The role of identity processing style and cognitive processes. Personality and Individual Differences, 44(3), 645-655.

Çaglar, E. (2009). Similarities and differences in physical self-concept of males and females during late adolescence and early adulthood. Adolescence, 44(174), 407.