If you are a teenager, have you ever been told, “you need to act more like an adult?” Or “stop acting like a child!” This is probably very common in the moral development of young adults for many reasons. Moral development is important for young adults due to this period of time in their life being crucial to the growth of the brain, the development of one’s character, and importance of influences on an individuals moral development. During a young adult’s period of adolescence, their brain is growing rapidly, both physically growing and expanding their personality traits. Due to the brain not being fully developed, a teenager’s brain does not make decisions the same way an adult’s brain does. According to the University of Rochester Medical center, “Adults think with the prefrontal cortex, the brain’s rational part. This is the part of the brain that responds to situations with good judgements and an awareness of long term consequences. Teens process information with the amygdala. This is the emotional part” (University). With a teenager’s central processor of information being based on emotions, it explains why there could be a constant influx of attitude or feelings. This emotional component connects to the development of their moral behavior. Lumen Learning describes this concept as, “As adolescents’ cognitive, emotional, and social development continue to mature, their understanding of morality expands and their behavior becomes more closely aligned with their values and beliefs” (Jones). With this in mind, it becomes clear that it is important to help care for the development of a young adult’s moral development. An example of how to help to care for the moral development of these young adults would be to be a positive influence or role model for them. To further explain the effect of an influence on a teenagers moral development, would be the reality that teenager’s moral opinions and characteristics do not develop on their own. There is often a wide variety of influences that play a role in their opinions. These influences can be either positive or negative. They can be parents, friends, teachers, coaches, social media or more. As a young adult grows up, the models they interact with on a daily basis will influence their moral development and behavior. Whether it be how a teenager sees an adult treat staff at a restaurant, or the peer pressure they face, these all play roles in their character development. In conclusion, young adults go through a crucial time of moral development in their adolescence, and they are affected by influences they interact with. These influences affect teenagers in both a positive and negative way. So, actively caring for and understanding the moral development of young adults is a way one can positively influence them.
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Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

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