Adolescence Then and Now

You are to interview someone who is over 60 years of age – a relative or friend in an attempt to gain an understanding of how the concept and the experience of adolescence have changed over time. 

Keep the interview friendly and informal.  It should last no more than 20 minutes, depending on your subject and how much he or she is enjoying the interview. Begin the interview by identifying yourself and your purpose (a course assignment in studying historical changes in adolescence) and by assuring your subject that his or her responses will remain confidential (within the confines of our classroom). Here is a list of suggested questions to ask during the interview.  You may add questions of your own if you wish. 

1.Did you attend high school? Did you want to? What kinds of subjects did you study? What kinds of homework did you get? Did most of the adolescents in your neighborhood go to high school?

2.How many hours per week did you work (not including homework)? How much did you contribute to the family income? Did you want to go to work? 

3.Did you get along with your parents when you were a teenager? What kinds of restrictions or rules did your parents place on your behavior?

4.What were your clothes like? Were you concerned about fashion?

5.Did you date in high school? At what age were you allowed to date? What did you typically do on a date?

6.How did you and your friends spend your free time?

7.What was your most nagging problem as a teenager?

8.What do you see as the main difference between the teenagers of today and yourself as a teenager? What do you think of today’s teenagers?

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