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date: 23 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The significance of peers in the lives of children and adolescents is described. The chapter begins with a discussion of theory relevant to the study of peer interactions, relationships, and groups. Next examined are the prevalence, stability, and characteristics of children’s friendships, the psychosocial correlates and consequences of having a mutual friendship and of having friendships with others who are experiencing adjustment difficulties. Thereafter, sections are focused on the assessment of peer acceptance, rejection, and popularity, and the behavioral, social-cognitive, affective, and self-system concomitants and longitudinal outcomes of peer acceptance and rejection. Subsequently, the extant literature pertaining to child and adolescent peer groups, cliques, and crowds is described. In the next section, the growing literature on culture and peer relationships is discussed. Then, in the summary, we present a transactional, developmental framework for understanding individual differences in children’s peer relationships experiences.

Keywords: peers, friendship, peer acceptance, peer rejection, popularity, peer group, internalizing problems, externalizing problems, individual differences, culture

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