UCI News

Emotional maturity lags cognitive ability in juveniles, study shows

A new study has found that teens often lack the social and emotional maturity to control impulses. In contrast, intellectual…

October 23, 2009

A new study has found that teens often lack the social and emotional maturity to control impulses. In contrast, intellectual abilities such as logical reasoning reach adult levels long before psychosocial maturity is achieved. “Many crimes committed by adolescents are done in groups and not premeditated. It’s difficult for a 16-year-old to resist peer pressure and fully appreciate the riskiness of dangerous situations,” says Elizabeth Cauffman (pictured), study co-author and UC Irvine psychology & social behavior associate professor. The study appears in the October issue of American Psychologist, a journal of the American Psychological Association.