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J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2004 Apr;32(2):147-58.

Cognitive moderators of the longitudinal association between peer rejection and adolescent depressive symptoms.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 06520-8205, USA.


This longitudinal study examined peer rejection as a predictor of adolescent depressive symptoms during the critical developmental period associated with substantial increases in the prevalence of girls' depression. In a sample of 158 adolescents aged 15-17 years, a peer nomination, sociometric assessment was conducted to examine adolescents' peer status at an initial time point, along with self-report measures of depressive symptoms, depressogenic attributions, and peer importance. Adolescents completed a second measure of depressive symptoms 17 months later. Results were consistent with integrated cognitive vulnerability-stress and cognitive dissonance models, particularly for girls. Specifically, peer rejection was a significant prospective predictor of depressive symptoms when combined with high levels of importance ascribed to peer status and high levels of adolescents' depressogenic attributional styles.

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