The role of reflection in promoting adolescent self-regulation

Philip David, Sabine Doebel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Executive function (EF)-the top-down, conscious control of thought, action, and emotion-has been found to be highly predictive of healthy adaptation in adolescence, when many individuals assume increased responsibility for setting and managing the pursuit of their personal goals. We use a developmental social cognitive neuroscience perspective to discuss EF and its relevance to adolescent selfregulation. Specifically, we argue that EF improves as a function of developmental increases in the ability to reflect consciously on one’s own perspective and its relation to a broader context of considerations, which in turn is achieved as neural circuits connecting relevant parts of the brain adapt to the environment and change as function of specific, repeated experiences. We conclude with a discussion of the implications of this viewfor efforts to improve EF in childhood and thereby promote self-regulation in adolescence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSelf-Regulation in Adolescence
EditorsG Oettingen, P Gollwitzer
Place of PublicationNew York, NY
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages29
ISBN (Electronic)9781139565790
ISBN (Print)9781107036000
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


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