Self-perceived competence and prospective changes in symptoms of depression and social anxietyedit
The primary aim of the current study was to replicate and extend previous findings by examining the relation of self-perceived competence with symptoms of depression and social anxiety in older adolescents. Focusing first on cross-sectional relations, we found that older adolescents’ depressive symptoms were similarly related to levels of perceived scholastic competence and social acceptance, whereas social anxiety was significantly more strongly related to perceived social acceptance. Next, examining symptom changes over a six-month follow-up, we found that perceived social acceptance and scholastic competence both independently predicted prospective changes in adolescents’ depressive symptoms, whereas perceived social acceptance, but not scholastic competence, predicted prospective changes in social anxiety. Although we also examined vulnerability–stress models of symptom change with negative academic and social events, none of these analyses was significant.