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A Survival Analysis of Adolescent Friendships: The Downside of Dissimilarity

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Date Issued:
2015
Abstract/Description:
Friendships are important for adolescent adjustment and development; however, adolescent friendships are fleeting. Friend dissimilarity and undesirable individual attributes have been hypothesized to predict friendship dissolution. The present study tests each as predictors of adolescent friendship dissolution. A sample of 410 U.S. adolescents participated in a total of 573 reciprocated friendships originating in the 7th grade. These friendships were followed annually from 8th-12th grade to determine when each friendship dissolved. In the 7th grade, participants completed a peernomination inventory, and teachers completed a survey of each participant’s school competence. Discrete-time survival analyses used 7th grade friend dissimilarity and individual characteristics of sex, age, ethnicity, number of friends, peer acceptance, peer rejection, leadership, physical aggression, relational aggression, peer victimization, and school competence as predictors of the occurrence and timing of friendship dissolution. Friendships originating in the 7th grade were at greatest risk for dissolution during the first year. Only 1 percent of friendships that started in the 7th grade lasted 5 years. Friend dissimilarity on sex, peer acceptance, physical aggression, and school competence predicted friendship dissolution. At each grade, the odds of friendship dissolution were higher for friends dissimilar on these characteristics. Individual characteristics failed to predict friendship dissolution. The findings suggest compatibility is a function of similarity between friends rather than the presence or absence of a specific individual trait. Adolescents seeking friendships with individuals dissimilar from them on school-related characteristics risk suffering the downside of dissimilarity, namely rapid friendship dissolution.
Title: A Survival Analysis of Adolescent Friendships: The Downside of Dissimilarity.
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Name(s): Hartl, Amy C.
Laursen, Brett
Cillessen, Antonius H. N.
Graduate College
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Poster
Date Created: 2015
Date Issued: 2015
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 1 p.
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Friendships are important for adolescent adjustment and development; however, adolescent friendships are fleeting. Friend dissimilarity and undesirable individual attributes have been hypothesized to predict friendship dissolution. The present study tests each as predictors of adolescent friendship dissolution. A sample of 410 U.S. adolescents participated in a total of 573 reciprocated friendships originating in the 7th grade. These friendships were followed annually from 8th-12th grade to determine when each friendship dissolved. In the 7th grade, participants completed a peernomination inventory, and teachers completed a survey of each participant’s school competence. Discrete-time survival analyses used 7th grade friend dissimilarity and individual characteristics of sex, age, ethnicity, number of friends, peer acceptance, peer rejection, leadership, physical aggression, relational aggression, peer victimization, and school competence as predictors of the occurrence and timing of friendship dissolution. Friendships originating in the 7th grade were at greatest risk for dissolution during the first year. Only 1 percent of friendships that started in the 7th grade lasted 5 years. Friend dissimilarity on sex, peer acceptance, physical aggression, and school competence predicted friendship dissolution. At each grade, the odds of friendship dissolution were higher for friends dissimilar on these characteristics. Individual characteristics failed to predict friendship dissolution. The findings suggest compatibility is a function of similarity between friends rather than the presence or absence of a specific individual trait. Adolescents seeking friendships with individuals dissimilar from them on school-related characteristics risk suffering the downside of dissimilarity, namely rapid friendship dissolution.
Identifier: FA00005882 (IID)
Collection: FAU Student Research Digital Collection
Note(s): The Sixth Annual Graduate Research Day was organized by Florida Atlantic University’s Graduate Student Association. Graduate students from FAU Colleges present abstracts of original research and posters in a competition for monetary prizes, awards, and recognition.
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Libraries
Sublocation: Digital Library
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/fd/FA00005882
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Owner Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.