This course focuses on adolescence, the period of life in which individuals transition from childhood to being considered by their society as adults. The class explores the developmental changes in individuals’ cognitive and social functioning during this period as well as the social experiences common to it. Attention will be devoted to issues that often cause problems during this period (e.g. adolescent pregnancy, drug and alcohol use, violence, etc.) as well as to the way that family and peer relationships, social institutions such as schools, and societal conditions such as poverty shape the experiences of adolescents and their developmental outcomes. Considerable attention will also be given to how cultural norms and expectations shape the experience of adolescence.
Field WorkCountry: Ghana
Date: September 27, 2017
The class will go to a middle school in Tema with people from San Kofa, an NGO that provides menstrual and reproductive health information to adolescents. We will see the school and the kinds of information provided on such topics, as well as the likely educational impact of their program, which provides sanitary pads to school girls. In addition, we will visit Lancaster University- Ghana (LUG) where we will discuss adolescence in Ghana with a number of students. Learning Objectives: 1. To learn about the problems and challenges facing youth in Ghana, especially those related to reproductive health and education. 2. To come to understand effective approaches with ameliorating such problems in Ghana, and the extent to which they are culture-specific, versus likely to be applicable in other developing countries.