Changing Relationships, Changing Youth: Interpersonal Contexts of Adolescent Development

W. Andrew Collins, Brett Laursen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

262 Scopus citations


In the past quarter century, research on adolescence has expanded from a near exclusive focus on intraindividual processes to a concern with individuals in an interpersonal context. Today, studies of the impact of relationships within families, with peers, and with romantic partners account for a large proportion of research in the field. This article out-lines three features of this transformation: an increasing focus on the nature of, changes in, and the developmental impact of adolescents' relationships with significant others; the expansion and diversification of networks of significant others during adolescence; and the recognition of significant interrelations among these relationships. Contemporary studies require research designs that encompass multiple significant relationships and that assess a broad range of relationship properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Early Adolescence
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2004


  • Parents
  • Peers
  • Relationships


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