August 2014 Dashboard

Cool kids don’t rule

Middle school students seen as “cool” by their peers don’t fare as well when they hit their mid-20s. A study published in the journal Child Development followed 184 middle-school students for 10 years.

Students who engaged in “pseudomature” activities—acting older than their age by sneaking into movies, shoplifting, or dating—had a higher rate of problems than their less-popular peers when they reached young adulthood.

By 22, the cool teens had a higher substance abuse and criminal behavior rates. Study author Joseph Allen, a professor of psychology at the University of Virginia, told the Los Angeles Times, “These kids are on the fast track, but it's really to a dead end."

Click here to continue reading.