Need Assistance? 01384 442752 (UK)


Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

Study adolescent psychology and understand more about the adolescent mind by distance learning.

  • Learn about the behaviours and understand the theory behind working and living with adolescents.
  • Develop an understanding of the changes that adolescents go through during their teenage years.
  • Understand the effect of the physical and mental changes that take place during adolescence.
  • Develop an understanding of the developmental changes that occur during adolescence and learn the best approaches to interacting with adolescents.
  • Study for professional development - suitable for people working in areas including: Carers, Foster Carers, Teachers, Social Workers, Law Enforcement.

It's easy to enrol...

Select a payment plan:  

Select a learning method  


Working with adolescents? Understand the adolescent mind with this distance learning course.

  • Learn how adolescents think.
  • Understand the theories behind characteristic behaviours.
  • Study theories of human development, crime, moral and social development.
  • Learn about physical, moral, emotional, intellectual and social development.
  • Learn about the development of emotions and crisis, and much more with this great distance learning course.

A course for anyone who wants to learn more about teenagers.

When you understand how and why teens think the way they do, it becomes easier to comprehend and manage their behaviour.  For adults who are well beyond their own adolescent experience, it can be difficult dealing with a child with relatively predictable behaviour coping with the changes that accompany adolescence.

With this course you will gain a greater understanding of the influences on an adolescents behaviour and thereby improve your capacity to influence the young person you are dealing with.

Studying Adolescent Psychology provides professional development for persons working in areas such as:

  • Carers
  • Foster carers
  • Teachers
  • Law enforcement
  • Social workers
  • Care workers
  • Children and family workers

It will also offer the benefit of greater knowledge for:

  • Parents
  • Coaches

And anyone wanting to understand more about the adolescent mind.


Adolescent Psychology is a 100 hour course, available to start at any time. The course consists of 10 lessons:

Lesson 1. Introduction
  • Theories of Human Development
  • What is adolescence?
  • Piaget’s theory of Cognitive Development
  • The stages of Piaget’s theories
  • Moral development
  • Erikson’s psychosocial development theory, stages
Lesson 2. Life Crises
  • Life crisis
  • Problems
  • Puberty
  • Attachment theory
  • Internalised and externalized problems
  • Types of problems experienced by adolescents
Lesson 3. Physical Development 
  • Puberty in females
  • Puberty in males
  • Hormones
  • Physical activity
  • Obesity
Lesson 4. Intellectual Development
  • Piaget’s formal operations stage
  • School problems
Lesson 5. Emotional Development
  • Freud’s theories
  • Emotional problems
  • Teenagers and grief
  • Eating problems
  • Depression
  • Emotional problems
  • Typical childhood responses to grief
  • Supporting a grieving child
Lesson 6. Sexuality
  • Acquisition of gender identity and social role identity
  • Vicarious learning and sexual identity
  • Gender dysphoria
  • Curiosity
  • Sex
  • Sexual behaviour
  • Masturbation
  • Sexuality and nudity
  • Answering questions
Lesson 7. Social Development
  • Family influence
  • Types of parenting
  • Denigration of parents
Lesson 8. Moral Development
  • Piaget’s theory of moral development
  • Kohlberg’s theory of moral reasoning
Lesson 9. Delinquency and Crime
  • Juvenile delinquency
  • Pathways to delinquency
  • Gangs
  • Crimes more likely in adolescence
  • Behaviour problems
  • Drugs, solvents and alcohol
  • Child abuse
  • Triggers of abuse
  • Stranger abuse
  • How to deal with deviance
Lesson 10. Adolescents and the Transition to Adulthood
  • Erikson’s later stages
  • The transition to adulthood

Each lesson is completed with an assignment for the student to complete and submit to the school for marking. Your tutor will make the assignment and return it to you with suggestions and comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


Students studying Adolescent Psychology will undertake a variety of tasks in each lesson, and benefit from the learning aims for each of the lessons:

  • Develop an understanding of the theories of child development in relation to adolescents.
  • Develop an understanding of life crises in relation to adolescents.
  • Develop an understanding of the physical changes that occur in puberty.
  • Develop an understanding of the intellectual changes that occur in adolescence.
  • Develop an understanding of the emotional development that occurs during adolescence.
  • Develop an understanding of sexuality during adolescence
  • Develop an understanding of the social development that occurs in adolescence.
  • Develop an understanding of the theories of moral development in relation to teenagers.
  • Consider the links between adolescence and delinquent activity such as crime.
  • Develop an understanding of the changes that occur moving from adolescence to adulthood.

Adolescence is a Period of Rapid Change

As children mature their peers become more influential in their lives and their relationships with them evolve. Adolescents have to learn to deal with feelings of sexual attraction as their bodies become stimulated by hormones. They may be involved in teenage romances.  They also learn to become more independent from their parents and this means changing social roles as they begin to work out who they are. 

According to the famous psychoanalyst, Erikson (1963) we pass through eight different stages of development from infancy to late adulthood and each presents us with a psychosocial conflict we must resolve in order to move forward successfully with our lives. During adolescence the conflict is between developing our identity and role confusion. In the pursuit of self-identity, adolescents test out different roles. In order to distinguish themselves from their parents, they may behave in opposite ways to their parents. For instance, if their parents prefer safe activities they may choose more risky ones. Failure during this stage can lead to confusion about one's identity or negative identity such as that of a juvenile delinquent.

As adolescents shift from emotional support of parents to peers, they also have more freedom and it can become a stressful time for some. Although adolescence is often painted as a time of 'storm and stress' the literature would seem to suggest that it is only stressful for a minority. This minority may experience conflict and stress in their relationships with their parents and adults generally.

Given that during this transition to adulthood adolescents identify with their peers, they become more influenced by their friends. If their friends engage in risky type behaviours or the peers they want to be accepted by do, they are more likely to act in the same way. Of course, overall adolescents are not all purveyors of bad behaviour. It is actually more likely that their friends will try to stop them from behaving poorly. Usually adolescents just develop ways of behaving that demarcate them from younger generations and adults. The interact using their own slang terms and dress in ways that define their groups. 

Why study Adolescent Psychology?

You may work with teenagers in a professional capacity, perhaps as a youth worker, teacher or family counsellor. Others may take this course for more personal reasons, such as better understanding and managing troubled teens in their own family.

  • Studying Adolescent Psychology will provide you with a rich foundation of knowledge that you can apply in real-life situations.
  • If you are interested in learning more about teenagers and how they think and develop, then why not enrol today?
  • You can start at any time and choose where and when you study with our online or eLearning study options.

Do you want to know more?

If you have any questions, or need help in deciding the right course for your aims and aspirations, please do get in touch with our expect Psychology and Counselling tutors today. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience, and will be happy to answer your questions and discuss different study options with you.

Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

Meet some of our academics

Tracey Jones (psychology)B.Sc. (Hons) (Psychology), M.Soc.Sc (social work), DipSW (social work), PGCE (Education), PGD (Learning Disability Studies) Tracey began studying psychology in 1990. She has a wide range of experience within the psychology and social work field, particularly working with people with learning disabilities. She is also qualified as a teacher and now teaches psychology and social work related subjects. She has been a book reviewer for the British Journal of Social Work and has also written many textbooks, blogs, articles and ebooks on psychology, writing, sociology, child development and more. She has had also several short stories published.

Check out our eBooks

Working With PeopleAre you a "people person" looking for a job; or a better understanding of careers that might suit you? If so, this book was written for YOU!
Family & Relationships CounsellingThe Family and Relationships Counselling ebook is an informative and helpful read for anyone who wants to improve their relationships or even help other people improve or nurture their own relationships.
Psychological ProfilingPsychological profiling is used to assess anyone from potential new staff and school children to serial killers. It helps you to determine someone’s personality, neuroses, mental health and career suitability. This book provides an excellent overview of psychological profiling techniques and pitfalls.
Counselling HandbookA book for both students, as well as volunteers who may be involved in helping people with problems. This is a starting point for understanding counselling, and a reference for developing counselling skills. The book contains seven chapters: 1. Where can counselling be used 2. How to see behind the mask 3. Emotions and attitudes 4. How to communicate better when all you have is words 5. Theory versus practice 6. Diffusing difficult situations 7. Golden rules or tips