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Posted: April 26th, 2023

PSY1010 – Touchstone 3.1 Smarter Decisions through Psychology

PSY1010 – Touchstone 3.1 Smarter Decisions through Psychology

Smarter Decisions through Psychology

Using what you have learned about the adolescent brain and social development, answer the questions in this case study assignment. Your goals are to help Monica understand why her son makes the choices he does and recommend some strategies that may help solve the problem.

For each question, you should write a paragraph-length response (5–7 sentences) to receive credit for this assignment. You may use your Sophia tutorials as a resource.

Question 1: What happens inside the brain of a teenager that makes it difficult for Jordan to weigh the risks and rewards of his behavior? Write a page paper – Describe how the adolescent brain weighs risk and reward.

Question 2: Why does it appear that Jordan values the opinion of his peers more than the opinion of his mother? Explain the psychological concepts that may account for why Jordan places value on his peers’ opinions.

Question 3: What advice would you give Jordan’s mother, Monica, that would teach him how to make better choices and decisions? Discuss a specific strategy that Monica may implement to help her son make better decisions.

Question 4: If you were in Monica’s shoes, how would you feel? Explain why a better understanding of Monica’s perspective could result in more constructive advice.

Question 1: During adolescence, the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for decision-making, planning, and impulse control, is not fully developed yet. This means that teenagers are more likely to engage in risky behavior as their ability to weigh the risks and rewards of their actions is still developing. The reward centers of the brain, such as the ventral striatum, are more active during adolescence, making teenagers more likely to seek out pleasurable experiences, even if they come with potential risks.

Question 2: Adolescents place a great deal of value on their peers’ opinions because of the concept of social identity. Social identity theory suggests that individuals derive part of their self-concept from the groups to which they belong. During adolescence, peer groups become more important as teenagers seek to establish their identity and social status. As a result, they may be more likely to conform to the norms and values of their peers, even if they go against their own beliefs or those of their parents.

Question 3: Monica can help her son make better decisions by having open and honest communication with him. She can try to understand his point of view and why he values the opinions of his peers. Additionally, she can help him develop his decision-making skills by encouraging him to weigh the risks and benefits of his actions and by providing him with guidance on how to handle challenging situations. One specific strategy that Monica can implement is to role-play different scenarios with Jordan, such as how to say no to peer pressure or how to handle a difficult social situation. This can help him develop the skills he needs to make better decisions.

Question 4: If I were in Monica’s shoes, I would likely feel worried and frustrated about my son’s behavior. It can be challenging to watch a child make decisions that could have negative consequences, especially when it seems like they are not listening to your advice. However, it is important to remember that adolescent behavior is a normal part of development and that there are strategies that can be used to help guide them towards making better choices. Understanding Monica’s perspective can help provide more constructive advice because it allows us to empathize with her situation and provide practical strategies that she can use to help her son.

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