Yolanda Sánchez Sandoval

University of Cadiz

Adolescents’ Well-being and Development in Risk and Protective Contextsy 

Participants: Inmaculada Martínez García1; Pilar Ridao Ramírez2; Claudia Aragón Acedo3; Sandra Melero Santos1

1University of Cadiz; 2Universit of Seville; 3University of Granada

Symposium Summary

The adolescent's well-being and optimal development approach show increased scientific evidence on different development and vital domains during this developmental stage. These advances impact on the social policies design for adolescents. However, a greater understanding of such phenomena among adolescents in vulnerable situations or at psychosocial risk is needed.

In this symposium, personal, family and social factors involved in well-being during adolescence were analysed. These studies have in common that they are focused on the development of adolescents growing up in risky contexts and/or with protection measures. They all share a quantitative methodology, and the adolescents themselves, their parents or their guardians participated as informants. First, in the longitudinal study with adolescents enrolled in 1st to 4th of Secondary Compulsory Education growing up with their biological families with some degree of psychosocial risk, the life satisfaction, the future expectations and the vocational guidance were analysed. Second, in a study with Andalusian adolescents whose families were participating in Family Treatment Programmes given their psychosocial risk, other variables, such as quality of life perception, were analysed. The last two studies were conducted with boys and girls (some adolescents in residential care) to whom protection measure have been adopted. Finally, a longitudinal study with adoptees young people relating their psychological adjustment during adolescence with the psychological well-being in adulthood is presented. In addition, the possible similarities and differences to adolescents who do not grow in risky contexts, as well as, specific needs and determinants were identified. The implications for promotion and prevention work on health and adolescent development are discussed.

Short CV

Senior Lecturer in Developmental and Educational Psychology at the University of Cadiz. Her undergraduate and postgraduate teaching is closely linked to child protection and development promotion. She is responsible for the SEJ 594 "Psychological Well-being, Risk and Protection" research group, that is part of the Institute of Research and Innovation in Biomedical and Health Sciences of Cadiz (INIBICA). She has an extensive research career on families and minors at psychosocial risk, and psychological aspects in adoption and foster care. She has participated as a researcher in many competitive projects and research contracts funded by public entities. She was an active member of the first Spanish researches on national and international adoptions. Her studies in Adoption Psychology were pioneers in Spain, becoming a national and international reference in research with adoptive families. She wrote many national and international publications in impact scientific journals such as American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, British Journal of Social Work, Children and Youth Services Review, Journal of Happiness Studies, Quality of Life Research. Recently she has led a longitudinal research project on the well-being and the psychological adjustment in adopted adults, and a contract with the Andalusian Administration on the minors’ adjustment in residential care. She continues her training with international research stays (such as McGill University (Montreal, Canada); University of Minho, (Braga, Portugal). It is highlighted the effort in disseminating the results of her research.

Go back to guest symposium