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Análise Psicológica

Print version ISSN 0870-8231


PEREIRA, Maria Gouveia  and  PIRES, Sara Sá. Experiência escolar e julgamentos acerca da autoridade. Aná. Psicológica [online]. 1999, vol.17, n.1, pp.97-109. ISSN 0870-8231.

In this paper we present a research about adolescents’ development attitudes towards formal authority in the school and in the public domain (police and law). We argue that school is an important source of experience in this area, providing most young people with their first close-up view of organisational rules, and their relationships with peer groups, as important supporting points of reference in the process of construction attitudes towards school authority and to formal authority in general. A total of 337 adolescents, aged between 14 and 18 years, were questioned about aspects of three different scales (Emler & Reicher, 1987; Rubini & Palmonari, 1995): subjective school’s valuation, attitudes to institutional authority. Data derived from the study of several variables: sex, school auto-estimated success, academic status (reprove or not reprove school years), disciplinary status (being expulse from the classroom), to which type of peer group do they belong (formal versus informal) and peers’ group identification degree. Factor analysis yielded six factors - Inadaptation to school rules, Insecurity towards school valuation, Self-esteem in funtion of the school experience, Positive attitudes towards the legal system and school authority, Duties/transgression towards institutional authority, and Partiality of legal authorities. Both overall attitude scores and factor scores were significantly related (MANOVA analysis) to: sex, school auto-estimated success, academic status and disciplinary status. Finally, analysis of the results indicate also that the attitude towards institutional authority may depend on the type of peer group, that young people belong, as well as identification’s degree.

Keywords : Adolescence; institucional authority.

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