Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Adolescence, the Age of Opportunity: Interview with Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D.

[Episode 90] Today's episode is about adolescence. I spoke with Laurence Steinberg, who wrote the book Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence.He is the author of approximately 350 articles and essays on growth and development during the teenage years, and the author, co-author, or editor of 17 books. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Psychological Association’s Bronfenbrenner Award for Lifetime Contribution to developmental Psychology in the Service of Science and Society and its Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research in Public Policy, as well as the National Academy of Sciences Henry and Bryna David Lectureship. In 2009, Steinberg was named the first winner of the Klaus J. Jacobs Research Prize for Productive Youth Development. In 2013, he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In today's interview Dr. Steinberg and I spoke about the growing gap between onset of puberty and the end of adolescence; challenges facing parents, providers, and policy makers to provide adolescents with experiences and skills needed to be successful; and how reconceptualizing adolescence as an age of opportunity rather than an age risk is an essential reframe to address the needs of this youth in this developmental stage. We ended our conversation with recommendations for practitioners, educators, and policy makers. 

One note, even though Dr. Steinberg and I work in adjacent buildings at Temple University, I interviewed him over Skype because he was out of the state.


(from Temple University website: http://www.cla.temple.edu/psychology/faculty/laurence-steinberg/)

Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D., is the Distinguished University Professor and Laura H. Carnell Professor of Psychology at Temple University. He received his A.B. in Psychology from Vassar College and his Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from Cornell University. Dr. Steinberg is a former President of the Division of Developmental Psychology of the American Psychological Association and of the Society for Research on Adolescence, former Director of the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice, and a member of the MacArthur Foundation’s Research Network on Law and Neuroscience. An internationally recognized expert on psychological development during adolescence, Dr. Steinberg’s research has focused on a range of topics in the study of contemporary adolescence, including adolescent brain development, risk-taking and decision-making, parent-adolescent relationships, school-year employment, high school reform, and juvenile justice. He served as a member of the National Academies’ Board on Children, Youth, and Families and chaired the Academies’ Committee on the Science of Adolescence. Dr. Steinberg was the lead scientist in the preparation of the American Psychological Association’s amicus briefs submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court in Roper v. Simmons, which abolished the juvenile death penalty; Graham v. Florida, which banned the use of life without parole for juveniles convicted of non-homicide crimes; and Miller v. Alabama, which prohibited the use of mandatory life without parole for all juvenile crimes.

Dr. Steinberg is the author of approximately 350 articles and essays on growth and development during the teenage years, and the author, co-author, or editor of 17 books. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Psychological Association’s Bronfenbrenner Award for Lifetime Contribution to developmental Psychology in the Service of Science and Society and its Award for Distinguished Contributions to Research in Public Policy, as well as the National Academy of Sciences Henry and Bryna David Lectureship. In 2009, Steinberg was named the first winner of the Klaus J. Jacobs Research Prize for Productive Youth Development. In 2013, he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


Jonathan Singer: Hey there podcasts listeners, Jonathan here. Before we get into today’s episode on adolescence. I want you to take a minute and think about your own adolescence. 

  • How old were you when you realized, I’m not a child anymore?
  • How old were you when you thought of yourself as an adult for the first time? 
  • What’s that thing you did as an adolescent which, at the time made no sense to the people around you, and once you stopped to think about it, maybe it didn’t make much sense to you either?
A few years ago, one of my favorite podcasts, an Australian show called, All in the Mind, had an episode called, The Teenage Brain: Myth or Marvel?
“And this is all in the mind, Natasha Mitchell with you on Radio National abc.net.au/rn. A warm welcome. You would’ve seen all the press coverage in recent years about the teenage brain. That it’s a work in progress. That major structural changes are going on during adolescents and that this explains while we’re teens were sometimes impulsive, risk takers, emotional, explosive, you’ve got the picture.” 

I loved this episode because Natasha Mitchell sounds so cool. And because it addressed a fundamental question: Is adolescence real or is it just a social construction? And it got me wondering, have I been thinking about adolescence all wrong? 

Well according to today’s guest, Larry Steinberg, the answer is, yes, we have been thinking about adolescence all wrong. And he wrote a whole book called Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence in order to change our minds. Dr. Steinberg is one of the most influential developmental psychologists of the 21st century. His bio is so long, that if I read it all, there wouldn’t be any time for the actual interview. So, here’s some highlights: He’s the author of over 350 scholarly publications, including the classic textbook Adolescence. Dr. Steinberg is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Sciences. Dr. Steinberg was the lead scientist in the preparation of the American Psychological Association’s amicus briefs submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court in Roper v. Simmons, which abolished the juvenile death penalty; Graham v. Florida which banned the use of life without parole for juveniles convicted of non-homicide crimes, and Miller vs. Alabama which prohibited the use of mandatory life without parole for all juvenile crimes. And on September 9th, 2014, Eamon Dolan published his book, Age of Opportunity which Martin Seligman, father of positive psychology, described, as quote, “Simply the best book I have ever read about adolescence.” Which is a pretty glowing recommendation. In today’s interview, Dr. Steinberg and I spoke about the growing gap between the onset of puberty and the end of adolescence, challenges facing parents, providers and policy makers to ensure that adolescents have experience and skills needed to be successful and how reconceptualizing adolescence as an age of opportunity, rather that an age of risk or simply surviving, is an essential reframe in order to address the needs of youth in this developmental stage. We ended our interview with implications for practitioners, educators, and policy makers. 

A quick note about the interview, even though Dr. Steinberg and I work at adjacent buildings at Temple University, I interviewed him over Skype because, he was out of state and I really wanted to get this interview. If you want to learn more about Dr. Steinberg please check out his website at laurencesteinberg.com or follow him on twitter @ldsteinberg. To connect with the global community of social worker podcast listeners, please visit our Facebook page at facebook.com/swpodcast or follow us on twitter @socworkpodcast. And if you like what you heard today and are curious to learn more, consider buying his book Age of Opportunity, online or your local independent book store. 

And now, without further ado, on to episode 90 of the Social Work Podcast, Adolescence, the Age of Opportunity: An interview with Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D. 


Jonathan Singer: Larry, thanks so much for being here on the Social Work Podcast to talk to us about adolescence. 

Laurence Steinberg: Sure, I’m glad to be here. 

Jonathan Singer: In your new book, you propose an entirely new way of thinking about adolescence. So, two related questions, first, how have we been thinking about adolescence? And second, how should we be thinking about adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: Well, I think that the conventional view of adolescence is, that it’s a time of inherent difficulty, difficulty for parents, difficulty for educators, difficulty for other people who work with teenagers. And I think that while certainly there are many young people who have problems and many families who have problems during this time period, that that’s the wrong way to think about what adolescence is. And what I try to argue is, that we ought to think about adolescence as a time of opportunity and not simply a time of trouble. Now, if we don’t take advantage of that opportunity, it can become, you know, a period that is characterized by problems. But one way to think about it is, that a lot of messages we send to people- if you look at books written about adolescence for parents, that this is a time when the best we can do is survive and I’m suggesting, instead, that we should think about it as a time when people can thrive. And then ask what does it take to help kids do this? 

Jonathan Singer: Hmm, Fascinating. Now I’m going to ask you to elaborate on that in a minute, but before we get there, I’m curious - Why are you suggesting that we should think differently about adolescence, has the research changed? 

Laurence Steinberg: Yeah. So, one of the most exciting breakthroughs in our understanding of adolescence, this new understanding that I describe in the book, comes from brain science. What I think we can tentatively conclude is that adolescence looks like a second period of heightened brain plasticity. Lots of people know that the brain can be affected by experience. That there are some developmental periods during which it’s quite malleable and I think most people recognize that the early years 0-3 constitute a period when the brain is especially influenced by experience. What new research is telling us, is that adolescence looks like a second period of heightened brain plasticity. And to me what this means is that we really need to pay careful attention to the kinds of experiences that we provide young people, because the experience that they have during adolescence may have a profound effect on how their brain develops and therefore a profound effect on the rest of their life. 

Jonathan Singer: And I think one of the things that people often say about adolescence is they don’t realize how profoundly their lives could be changed by their decisions. In the introduction of your book, you told a little story of a teenage girl form a well to do family who was caught shop lifting. You suggested that asking her to explain why this happened was almost an exercise in futility. What’s going on in the adolescent brain that would be an argument against that kind of insight seeking? 

Laurence Steinberg: Those of us who have raised and worked with teenagers have recognized that lots of time kids just get carried away in the moment. And they don’t really understand why they do what they do. And I don’t think that necessarily trying to get them to understand why they did what they did is going to be particularly productive. Now that doesn’t mean that talking about experiences that we wish they wouldn’t have had isn’t valuable, but I wouldn’t approach it as a matter of insight. I might approach it as kind of, well, when you are in this kind of situation, what could you do to stop “X” from happening. As I described, some of our own research that we’ve done at Temple on adolescence suggests that when teenagers are with their friends, this really activates certain brain regions that might make them do risky and reckless things that they wouldn’t do by themselves. And that’s how I connect this opening story with some of the work we’ve been doing on peer influence and the adolescent brain. 

Jonathan Singer: So, what are the implications of this changing brain, this plasticity problem with self-control or rewards for pleasing peers, that make adolescents do things that they wouldn’t do? I’m thinking specifically about implications for social workers who work with youth in schools, you know, mental health settings, adjudicated youth, etc. etc. 

Laurence Steinberg: Well I think that there are a couple of important implications here. The first implication, I think, has to do with what we mean about plasticity. So, when the brain is very plastic, it’s highly influenced by experience. And plasticity, you see, cuts both ways, because when the brain is highly influenced by experience, that means that people can really benefit from positive experiences as well as be harmed by negative ones. So that’s what I mean when I talk about an age of opportunity, that it’s an opportunity to help kids develop in positive ways with respect to how we react to their bad behavior. And a lot of my research, as you know, is on juvenile offenders. I think we need to recognize that adolescents don’t have the judgment that adults do and that, therefore, policies that come down on them too hard may be disproportionate and unfair in some ways. I think that zero tolerance policies in schools make for a good example of that. Kids just go through a period where they do things that are more reflective of bad judgment than bad character. And I don’t think that we should necessarily respond by treating kids who do bad things as if they are bad people. Which I think is a lot of what goes on within the justice system. 

Jonathan Singer: I’m very encouraged to hear you say that the adolescent brain is very open to positive experiences. Are there some experiences that social workers and other helping professionals could provide for adolescents, or that they could help parents provide adolescents, that are better for adolescent brain development than others? 

Laurence Steinberg: Well I think that it’s useful to step back and say, what do we want to accomplish during this developmental period and how can individuals in helping professions and in education and parents, for that matter, move kids toward this goal? And to me, I think the most important task of adolescence, the important developmental task, is improving self-regulation, self-control, whatever to you want to call it so that kids are better able to take control of their emotions and their thoughts and their actions. And what I think is encouraging is that there is a movement now mainly within education, but I think it will spread probably to the helping professions as well. There’s a movement to help develop, you know, what people are calling “non-cognitive skills.” It’s a terrible phrase, but that’s the phrase that people are using and what they mean by that, I think, really has to do with self-regulation and self-control. and there’s some things that seem to work. It turns out that there’s, you know, a pretty good body of research that suggests that mindfulness meditation helps individuals develop better self-control. And I think that’s very good news because that’s something that counselors can teach kids how to do. It’s something that teachers can teach kids how to do. It’s something that parents and kids can both learn how to do, because it’s good for adults as well as kids. So, it seems to me, that helping to strengthen that muscle, if you want to think about it that way, ought to be a very important goal of what those of us who work with kids try to accomplish. 

Jonathan Singer: When I think of someone who can do mindfulness mediation I think of someone who already has a certain amount of maturity and self-regulation. I don’t generally think of adolescents, but your saying that they are very appropriate for adolescents? 

Laurence Steinberg: I think they’re not only appropriate for adolescents, but I think that they are very teachable. I think that we have to tweak the teaching in a way that’s developmentally appropriate. So I wouldn’t expect an adolescent who’s not had any experience with mindfulness training to sort of jump right in and be able to do it for ten minutes. It’s hard for most of us to do it for that long. But I think you can start with small steps and increase the amount of time. And I’ve even seen some studies that they’ve done this with adjudicated offenders and helped them develop some self-control as well. This is just one, you know, one approach. There are other things that turn out to be helpful. Various types of cognitive behavioral treatments that focus on self-control have been shown to be effective with aggressive kids, for example. But I think that the general principle here is that, acquiring the capacity to regulate one’s thoughts, emotions, and behaviors is what we ought to strive to do when we are working with kids in need. 

Jonathan Singer: Social workers address issues at the micro, meso, macro level and today we’ve been talking about a very micro perspective- adolescent neurobiology, self-regulation, things like that. [15:34] Could you give us an example of one thing, that policy, you know that macro level folks, should understand about the new science of adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: One very important message that I try to drive home in the book is that, adolescence itself, as a developmental period, is changing in ways that should make us rethink our policies and practices. And among the most important of those changes is the shear lengthening of it as a time of life. So conventionally those of us who study adolescence, think of it as beginning in biology and ending in culture. So adolescence begins with puberty, a biological event, and it concludes when people make the transition into the conventional roles of adulthood, so full time employment, marriage or something that looks like marriage, parenthood. And what we see, if we track those boundary marks, is that the age of puberty is beginning lower and lower and the age at which people transition into adult roles has been getting later and later. So this developmental period, that not that long ago, I mean let’s go back to the 1950s, you know, using those markers, adolescence probably took most people about seven years. And now it takes more than twice that amount of time. So we see kids who going through puberty before 10. One statistic that may really astound your listeners is that data collected and published in the year 2000, so that already kind of old data, suggests that 20% of young black girls are developing breasts by the time they are seven years old- that’s second grade. If we have policies on sex education that don’t start, you know, we’re not going to start educating kids about sexuality until they are 14 or 15 years old. I mean that’s seven years too late for a large population of kids. And so we haven’t adapted the way we treat and deal with adolescence. To the fact that it begins so much earlier and takes so much longer. The important implication is, what it means to succeed, now as an adolescent, is the ability to delay gratification for a very very long time. So, when there were jobs available for people who were just finishing high school, they could get on with their adult lives when they were 18 years old. Well we know those jobs are gone. One thing I was really surprised to learn in doing research for the book is that, there is no longer any economic advantage of just going to college for a couple years. You’ve got to get a college degree in order to reap the earnings benefits of that. Well that means staying in school until you’re at least 22. The average undergraduate now takes six years to finish a bachelor’s degree, so we’re really talking 24, something like that. Well, what do people need in order to be able to stick it out for that long? Not everybody loves school. So how do we help people navigate adolescence when it’s such a long passage? And I don’t think that we’ve thought very carefully about that. 

Jonathan Singer: I think that’s a really important idea that adolescence, at least in terms of an area of study, is a fifteen-year period. But I can’t imagine that the policies, interventions, or services that one would develop for a 10-year-old, would also be appropriate or practical for a fifteen-year-old, or even someone in college. [19:33] So, in what sense is this period in adolescence, one period as opposed to discrete segments? 

Laurence Steinberg: Yeah, I mean that’s certainly a valid and good point. I think of adolescence as really comprising three different periods, the early adolescent years which go from puberty to probably the beginning of high school; Then the high school period; Then this period of time that goes until the mid-twenties. There’s been a lot of discussion in the academic world about what to call that period, whether we call it, you know, young adulthood, or merging adulthood, or extending adolescence. And frankly, I think that conversation is a distraction, because I don’t think it matters what we call it. I think what matters is that we recognize it’s taking people longer to move into the roles of adulthood. Now back to the question about whether policies and practices for ten-year-olds should be the same as for 22-year-olds, of course not. But I think we have to stop looking at 10 and 11 years old as if they’re children and start thinking about, what are their needs if they’re actually adolescents and not children. And you know just in terms of educating people in social work, or education or psychology, I don’t think that many people going into those fields would automatically think of 10-year-olds as adolescents. But in lots of cases they are. And what does this mean for how we train people in our fields? And what kinds of knowledge do they need? I’ll never forget this experience I had doing an in-service education for middle school teachers in a very large urban school district and I was going through teaching about adolescent development, psychological, emotional cognitive development, and I paused and asked if there are questions. And a teacher raised her hand and she said, “Isn’t it true that during this time period, when the brain is developing so rapidly that people are incapable of learning?” And I was thinking, Wow, this is just amazing that somebody who is an educator is viewing her students as being incapable of learning. And so, I just think we need to do a better job of educating people who work with young people about what adolescence is, when it begins, when it ends, what the different phases of adolescence are, and I don’t think, in many incidences, we are doing a very good job of that. 

Jonathan Singer: Is it a reasonable distinction to say that we’re seeing a divergence between the biological period of puberty and the social period that we’re calling adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: I think it’s a very reasonable distinction, but I think that, then I think, it raises the question of, what does this disparity mean? What does this junction mean? So as a psychologist, I think about the fact that kids’ engines are getting ignited at a much earlier age than their breaking systems are becoming mature. So what does it mean for young people to start having sexual feelings and sexual urges when they are clearly not emotionally ready to develop those kinds of relationships? And what kinds of capacities and skills do we need to impart to kids to manage that? And I don’t mean just sexual urges. One of the interesting things that we are learning from brain science has to do with the impact of pubertal hormones on the brain. And they make us much more reward sensitive. Not just sexually, but in response to all kinds of rewards. Having to manage those urges and those drives at a very young age is a challenge and it’s a different kind of challenge than most of us would ordinarily think about. So one of the metaphors I use in the book is that there was a time when parents would say to their kids that they should wait until they are married before having sex with somebody. Well that was easy to do when you went through puberty when you were 16 and you got married when you were 21. It’s pretty hard to do when you go through puberty when you are 10 and you don’t get married until you are thirty. I mean it seems completely unrealistic to ask somebody to reign in that urge for twenty years. That’s what I mean when I say that adolescence is changing in ways that is kind of outstripping our thinking about it and the policies and practices that we developed. 

Jonathan Singer: Another thing that’s changed in the past thirty years is the emergence of video games. Now’ you’ve created a driving video game in order to do research on adolescents and risk taking. And I know you don’t do research on video games, but I’m wondering if you have any opinions on video games and adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: You know that I think we have a long history of confusing the medium with the message. So, I think that a lot of the bashing of video games, you know, and internet related activities that goes on now, is kind of silly. It’s like asking whether television is good or bad for kids. Well, it depends on if you’re watching PBS or Jersey Shore. So asking whether kids involvement in internet-based activities is good or bad for them, without asking what the activities are, seems kind of silly. And as many of your listeners know, adults have been worrying about the media kids have been exposed to, ever since there’s been media. I mean you can find diatribes against comic books, you know, in the 1950s. And against comic books that would be very tame by today’s standards. So I think a lot of the concerns about kids’ video related activities now are misplaced.
Jonathan Singer: A number of your previous books have addressed parents. 

Laurence Steinberg: Mhmm

Jonathan Singer: Do you have any advice for social workers, or really any professionals who work with parents- how they should help parents think differently about adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: Well for starters, I think it comes back to our earlier conversation about thriving versus surviving. If I said to your listeners, you know presumably most of them are social workers or in related fields, and said, look I think you should be happy if your kid gets through adolescence without being a drug addict, getting arrested, or having an unintended pregnancy and that’s the bar I’m going to set, you wouldn’t accept that as your goal as a parent. So we want more than stopping kids from dropping out of school. We want them to actually enjoy learning and love being in school and want them to continue on and finish to go to secondary education and go into post-secondary education and finish that. So I think one change in orientation is to try to get parents to be more interested in what kinds of positive goals they have for their kids, rather than simply kind of surviving and preventing damage. A second implication, and one that I think is good news, is that a lot of the things we’ve been doing all along to try and help parents be better parents are probably good for adolescents in ways that help them improve self-regulation. So that there’s a style that psychologists call authoritative parenting, which is the combination of warmth and firmness and developmentally appropriate support for independence. And these things, when done together, have been shown to improve kids’ self-regulation and self-control. And we know there have been experiments done where parents have been taught how to do these things. So we know that we can teach parents to be better parents. So I think those are two examples of things that I think social workers could do that would be helpful. 

Jonathan Singer: One of the chapters of your book is called, Winners and Losers, in which you make the connection between adolescent development and income inequality. [27:53] Can you talk about how the extension of adolescence, you were mentioning earlier, translates into a widening gap between winners and losers? 

Laurence Steinberg: I think that kids who grow up in more affluent circumstances are the ones who are the winners here. I mean it’s unfortunate and sort of an old story about the rich getting richer, but I think that given what we know about the impact of poverty and stress and trauma on the brain, and how those experiences specifically disrupt the development of brain systems that are important for self-control, that kids growing up in poverty are being disadvantaged in ways that are making it more difficult for them to delay gratification in the ways that are now more and more important for succeeding. 

Jonathan Singer: So what’s an example of that? 

Laurence Steinberg: If puberty is occurring earlier, that means that kids are going through this surge and reward seeking earlier and they need a stronger prefrontal cortex than ever in order to deal with early puberty. And if some kids in our society are having experiences early in life that are interfering with the development of their prefrontal cortex, that they’re going to be especially disadvantaged by going through puberty earlier. So that’s one example of a way in which I think this change in adolescence is contributing to income inequality. 

Jonathan Singer: So exposure to violent situations in neighborhoods, shootings, or constant police intervention, the tearing a part of families as a result of the criminal industrial complex as well as abuse and neglect, these are some of the things that impair the development of the prefrontal cortex that’s so important in impulse control and emotional regulation. 

Laurence Steinberg: And that is so important in those ways. And that it’s even more important today because of the need to be able to stay in school so much longer. So I guess I would say that, given the fact that we now need to complete college in order to be able to participate successfully in the labor force, that having good self-control and capacity to delay gratification for a long time is more important than it’s ever been. So anybody that has experiences that interferes with that capacity is going to be more disadvantaged than ever before. 

Jonathan Singer: So what can we do to help youth, particularly youth in these low income and economically disadvantaged communities, to develop impulse control and emotional regulation and become winners? 

Laurence Steinberg: Yeah, well, I think that one of the most important implications has to do with schools and it has to do with asking, what can schools do to help facilitate the development of these kind of non-cognitive skills. And you know, there’s a lot of interest now around the country in schools for low income families and not just focusing on the academic side of things. We can’t lose site of those goals, but that’s not all that schools should be thinking about. And asking, what can schools do to help facilitate the development of self-control and self-regulation and what some people are calling, grit. And I think if you look at programs like KIPP, and that’s a big focus of KIPP, is on character development and not just on academic skill development. 

[31: 28] 
Jonathan Singer: You know when you mentioned grit, I of course thought of Angela Duckworth’s research on grit. I heard her interviewed live at WHYY in Philadelphia by journalist, Mike and Scott, who asked her, why the concept of grit seemed to of taken off with the public imagination so well. And she said, that in addition to it being an old and familiar term, which it is, it also represented something that was within our control to change, as opposed to IQ, which is this elusive thing that you are born with. 

Jonathan Singer: So are you saying that educational programs that work on helping kids develop grit is one of the solutions to the problems associated with an elongated phase of adolescence? 

Laurence Steinberg: Yes. Angela Duckworth is a very close friend of mine, and a collaborator, and we just finished an article on the development of self-control. So I ‘ve been very influenced by her thinking about this and I agree. And I think the research suggests that, particularly in the stage of adolescence, that I think it is a lot easier to influence the development of grit than it is to influence the development of IQ, which tends to be very stable after age six or so. But grit is not, grit is something that can be facilitated, and I think we better try to do that. 

Jonathan Singer: Well Larry, thank you so much for being on the podcast and sharing some of your insights from your new book, Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science on Adolescence. 

Laurence Steinberg: Sure, thanks a lot Jonathan. 


Jonathan Singer: I'm Jonathan Singer and thanks for being with me today for another episode of the Social Work Podcast. If you missed an episode or have suggestions for future episodes, please visit www.socialworkpodcast.com. If you'd like to support the Podcast, please visit our online store at www.cafepress.com/swpodcast.  To all of the Social Workers out there, keep up the good work. We'll see you next time at the Social Work Podcast.

Transcription generously donated by Stacie Wentling, MSW, Program Manager, California Youth Crisis Line

References and Resources

APA (6th ed) citation for this podcast:

Singer, J. B. (Producer). (2014, September 9). #90 - Adolescence, the Age of Opportunity: Interview with Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D. [Audio Podcast]. Social Work Podcast. Retrieved from http://www.socialworkpodcast.com/2014/09/steinberg.html


Lauren Gillespie said...

Hey Jonathan,
I was unable to listen on stitcher, the podcast was garbled about 7 minutes in.
Are you able to fix that? I also tried to listen on the podcast app but was getting the same garbled podcast.

Jonathan B. Singer, Ph.D., LCSW said...

Lauren - Thank you so much. You are absolutely right - the version on Stitcher is garbled. I was able to download a "clean" copy using Podcast Republic (Android app). I will contact Stitcher to see if they can fix the episode. Have you tried playing it from the website? Thanks for your patience.


Lauren Gillespie said...

Great! I am so excited to listen to this, as a social worker and a mom of a new teen! It plays fine from the website, I just tend to listen to podcasts when I'm in the car.
Take care!

Unknown said...


I downloaded the file from your site to my iphone and had the same problem - garbled after the intro. Looking forward to listening. Thank you for your wonderful work!
John Petersen

Jonathan B. Singer, Ph.D., LCSW said...


Thanks so much for letting me know. Clearly the MP3 file is corrupted somehow. I was unable to replicate the problem, but since both of you have had problems I'll recreate the MP3 file and upload a new version. I'll pay a comment here when I've been able to do it.

Thanks for you patience.