The neuroscience of adolescent decision-making

Catherine A. Hartley, Leah H. Somerville

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Adolescence is a phase of the lifespan associated with greater independence, and thus greater demands to make self-guided decisions in the face of risks, uncertainty, and varying proximal and distal outcomes. A new wave of developmental research takes a neuroeconomic approach to specify what decision processes are changing during adolescence, along what trajectory they are changing, and what neurodevelopmental processes support these changes. Evidence is mounting to suggest that multiple decision processes are tuned differently in adolescents and adults including reward reactivity, uncertainty-tolerance, delay discounting, and experiential assessments of value and risk. Unique interactions between prefrontal cortical, striatal, and salience processing systems during adolescence both constrain and amplify various component processes of mature decision-making.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)108-115
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Behavioral Sciences
Volume5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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