Social Withdrawal In Childhood and Adolescence Peer Relationships and Social Competence

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Heidi Gazelle, Assistant Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: During the past three decades, the study of children's peer relationships and social skills has taken a prominent position in the fields of developmental and clinical psychology. This reflects, in part, a growing conviction that children who are socially skilled enjoy strong and positive relationships with their peers; in turn, those who are accepted by their peers and able to develop supportive friendships fare well in their social, emotional, and academic lives It is also known that children who are socially unskilled often suffer from peer rejection and friendlessness that place them "at risk" for later socioemotional and academic difficulties (for relevant reviews, see Rubin, Bukowski, & Laursen, 2009). Why the latter group is at risk has not been well addressed from the perspective of a "grand theory" of peer interactions and relationships. Yet there is a good deal of consensus across diverse theoretical perspectives as to the many benefits of peer interactions and relationships in childhood and adolescence. In this chapter, we briefly review theories that suggest the significance of peer interactions and relationships for normal psychosocial adaptation. Thereafter, we review the empirical literature pertaining to one subgroup of children, many of whose members have been described as lacking in social competence and as having less than adequate relationships with their peers. Given the focus of this edited volume, it should not be too surprising that this group comprises those who are socially anxious and withdrawn.

Additional Information

K.H. Rubin & R. Coplan (Eds.), The Development of Shyness and Social Withdrawal (pp. 131-156). Guilford.
Language: English
Date: 2010
Social anxiety, Solitude, Social withdrawal, Children, Adolescence

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