Social Networks and the Diffusion of Adolescent Problem Behavior: Reliable Estimates of Selection and Influence from Sixth Through Ninth Grades

Social Networks and the Diffusion of Adolescent Problem Behavior: Reliable Estimates of Selection... Seeking to reduce problematic peer influence is a prominent theme of programs to prevent adolescent problem behavior. To support the refinement of this aspect of prevention programming, we examined peer influence and selection processes for three problem behaviors (delinquency, alcohol use, and smoking). We assessed not only the overall strengths of these peer processes, but also their consistency versus variability across settings. We used dynamic stochastic actor-based models to analyze five waves of friendship network data across sixth through ninth grades for a large sample of U.S. adolescents. Our sample included two successive grade cohorts of youth in 26 school districts participating in the PROSPER study, yielding 51 longitudinal social networks based on respondents’ friendship nominations. For all three self-reported antisocial behaviors, we found evidence of both peer influence and selection processes tied to antisocial behavior. There was little reliable variance in these processes across the networks, suggesting that the statistical imprecision of the peer influence and selection estimates in previous studies likely accounts for inconsistencies in results. Adolescent friendship networks play a strong role in shaping problem behavior, but problem behaviors also inform friendship choices. In addition to preferring friends with similar levels of problem behavior, adolescents tend to choose friends who engage in problem behaviors, thus creating broader diffusion. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Prevention Science Springer Journals

Social Networks and the Diffusion of Adolescent Problem Behavior: Reliable Estimates of Selection and Influence from Sixth Through Ninth Grades

Loading next page...
 
/lp/springer_journal/social-networks-and-the-diffusion-of-adolescent-problem-behavior-FhT5kZjH8b
Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2015 by Society for Prevention Research
Subject
Medicine & Public Health; Public Health; Health Psychology; Child and School Psychology
ISSN
1389-4986
eISSN
1573-6695
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11121-015-0558-7
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Seeking to reduce problematic peer influence is a prominent theme of programs to prevent adolescent problem behavior. To support the refinement of this aspect of prevention programming, we examined peer influence and selection processes for three problem behaviors (delinquency, alcohol use, and smoking). We assessed not only the overall strengths of these peer processes, but also their consistency versus variability across settings. We used dynamic stochastic actor-based models to analyze five waves of friendship network data across sixth through ninth grades for a large sample of U.S. adolescents. Our sample included two successive grade cohorts of youth in 26 school districts participating in the PROSPER study, yielding 51 longitudinal social networks based on respondents’ friendship nominations. For all three self-reported antisocial behaviors, we found evidence of both peer influence and selection processes tied to antisocial behavior. There was little reliable variance in these processes across the networks, suggesting that the statistical imprecision of the peer influence and selection estimates in previous studies likely accounts for inconsistencies in results. Adolescent friendship networks play a strong role in shaping problem behavior, but problem behaviors also inform friendship choices. In addition to preferring friends with similar levels of problem behavior, adolescents tend to choose friends who engage in problem behaviors, thus creating broader diffusion.

Journal

Prevention ScienceSpringer Journals

Published: May 6, 2015

References

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create lists to
organize your research

Export lists, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off