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Change and consistency of self-esteem in early and middle adolescence in the context of school transition


Białecka-Pikul, Marta; Stępień-Nycz, Małgorzata; Sikorska, Iwona; Topolewska-Siedzik, Ewa; Cieciuch, Jan (2019). Change and consistency of self-esteem in early and middle adolescence in the context of school transition. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 48(8):1605-1618.

Abstract

Self-esteem is continuous and has stable characteristics, but it may also change, e.g., during transitions from one educational level to the next. In a prospective cross-sectional study over a year and a half, 250 Polish early adolescents (N = 109, 54 girls; mean age at T1 = 12.68 years, SD = 0.49) and middle adolescents (N = 141, 107 girls; mean age at T1 = 15.80, SD = 0.44) were tested three times using Harter’s Self-Perception Profile for Adolescents, assessing both global self-esteem and self-evaluation in eight domains. The change and consistency of self-esteem were analyzed, at both group and individual levels. At the group level, the following results were found: (1) continuity of self-esteem in five domains (scholastic competence, athletic competence, physical appearance, close friendship, and romantic appeal) and in global self-esteem and discontinuity in only three domains (social acceptance, job competence, and behavioral conduct); (2) significant inter- individual variation in the change not explained by age; and (3) higher self-esteem (in five domains) in early adolescents. At the individual level, the stability in most domains was weak, but was restored over the second year at the new school. The complexity of the developmental change and consistency in self-esteem in adolescence was highlighted, emphasizing the need for analyzing both group and individual change.

Abstract

Self-esteem is continuous and has stable characteristics, but it may also change, e.g., during transitions from one educational level to the next. In a prospective cross-sectional study over a year and a half, 250 Polish early adolescents (N = 109, 54 girls; mean age at T1 = 12.68 years, SD = 0.49) and middle adolescents (N = 141, 107 girls; mean age at T1 = 15.80, SD = 0.44) were tested three times using Harter’s Self-Perception Profile for Adolescents, assessing both global self-esteem and self-evaluation in eight domains. The change and consistency of self-esteem were analyzed, at both group and individual levels. At the group level, the following results were found: (1) continuity of self-esteem in five domains (scholastic competence, athletic competence, physical appearance, close friendship, and romantic appeal) and in global self-esteem and discontinuity in only three domains (social acceptance, job competence, and behavioral conduct); (2) significant inter- individual variation in the change not explained by age; and (3) higher self-esteem (in five domains) in early adolescents. At the individual level, the stability in most domains was weak, but was restored over the second year at the new school. The complexity of the developmental change and consistency in self-esteem in adolescence was highlighted, emphasizing the need for analyzing both group and individual change.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Business Administration
08 Research Priority Programs > Social Networks
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Social Psychology
Social Sciences & Humanities > Education
Social Sciences & Humanities > Developmental and Educational Psychology
Social Sciences & Humanities > Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
Language:English
Date:27 May 2019
Deposited On:05 Feb 2020 07:49
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 13:43
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0047-2891
OA Status:Hybrid
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-019-01041-y
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:19004

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