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Adolescent Development Toolkit

ACT for Youth Highlight
Purpose in Adolescence
In this article, the authors present evidence that having a sense of purpose can help adolescents successfully navigate challenges.


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Toolkit: Identity Development

Identity development is a central task of adolescent development. Who am I? How do I fit in? What is my role? These are all key questions adolescents are asking themselves. Important dimensions of identity formation include race, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation, among others.

Adolescent Identity Development

This article briefly defines and describes types, dimensions, and stages/statuses of identity. ACT for Youth.


"Who Am I?" -- Identity Formation in Adolescence

Written by Rachel Sumner of Cornell University, this handout provides a brief overview of adolescent identity development. ACT for Youth.


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Identity Development Theory

This open education module briefly covers the fundamentals of identity development theory. Lumen.

Online Course Module

Identity Formation in Adolescence

This article reviews identity formation during adolescence, presenting both theory and research. ACT for Youth.

Fact Sheet

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Ethnic and Racial Identity Development

Summary of Stages of Racial Identity Development

This document summarizes several prominent frameworks that describe stages of racial and ethnic identity development. Racial Equity Tools.

Summary Chart

Understanding Racial-Ethnic Identity Development (presentation)

In this presentation, Dr. Sandra Chapman discusses why it is important to understand racial and ethnic dimensions of identity and introduces models that help us make sense of these identities. Embrace Race.

Presentation and Transcript

Understanding Ethnic-Racial Identity Development (handout)

Developed by Gabe Murchison, this fact sheet briefly presents key terms and dimensions of ethnic-racial identity and ideas for promoting identity development in schools. Harvard Graduate School of Education.


Adolescent Ethnic-Racial Identity Development Lab at Harvard

Led by Dr. Adriana Umaña-Taylor, the Adolescent Ethnic-Racial Identity Development (AERID) lab draws on socio-cultural ecological approaches to understanding ethnic-racial identity development in adolescence. The lab offers resources on ethnic-racial identity. Harvard Graduate School of Education.


The Intersection of Adolescent Development and Anti-Black Racism

This report includes, among other topics, a discussion of the impact of anti-Black racism on adolescent identity development. National Scientific Council on Adolescence and UCLA Center for the Developing Adolescent.


Project READY: Reimagining Equity & Access for Diverse Youth, Module 9

Module 9 of this professional development curriculum for librarians and other educators focuses on racial and ethnic identity development. Many additional resources are linked within the module. Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Online Training Module

Gender and Sexual Orientation

About Boys

In this article, we discuss the pressures on boys with respect to masculinity and sex and provide resources for those who work with boys. ACT for Youth.


The Future is Non-Binary, and Teens are Leading the Way

Here, a researcher describes what he found from surveying hundreds of LGBTQ youth about gender identity. Pacific Standard.


Understanding Gender Identities

Written especially for young people who are questioning where they are on the gender continuum, this article covers gender basics in plain language. The Trevor Project.


How Do LGBT Youth in NYS Talk about Gender and Sexual Orientation?

In this article, the authors discuss the fluid nature of identity labelling and provide examples.


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Growing Up LGBT in America

Based on a survey of more than 10,000 LGBT-identified teens, this report presents the challenges faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth, and also describes LGBT teens' strengths and safe havens. Follow-up reports spotlight specific populations such as Latino LGBT youth, gender-expansive youth, and more. Human Rights Campaign.


Gender Norms and Sexual Health Behaviors

In part 2 of her series on gender and sexual health, Lori Rolleri discusses traditional gendered social conditioning and the harms it can bring to our health.


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