Body Image, Gender, and School Experience in Adolescence: A Data-Driven Learning Guide Go to Resource


Body image is an individual's estimation of his/her own physical appearance, and it is closely linked to self-esteem.

Adolescence is characterized by a period of physical, emotional, and psychological development. These rapid mental and bodily changes are associated with increased self-consciousness and awareness of the messages about what is valued in one's network of friends and in the larger society. American teenagers are bombarded with media images of beauty, illustrated by slender, flawless female models and muscular male athletes. Studies show that academic performance for females declines during adolescence and it has been suggested that this is tied to changing self-perceptions (especially lowered self-esteem) brought on by the physical and emotional changes occurring at the same time.

The goal of this exercise is to explore the ways in which adolescents' body image is related to attitudes and experiences in school. Particular attention will be paid to similarities and differences between boys and girls. Crosstabulations, comparison of correlations, and comparison of means will be used.

Analysis Type(s):
Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research
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