Book Announcement: College Student Psychological Adjustment by Jonathan Mattanah

August 24, 2016 8:52 AM | Anonymous

My name is Jonathan Mattanah and I am a professor of psychology at Towson University in Baltimore, MD.  I have been studying emerging adults in college for the past 15 years and have been particularly interested in understanding how students’ relationships with their parents, peers, and romantic partners affect their social-emotional adjustment to the campus.  I am pleased to announce that I have recently completed an extensive review of the literature on students’ psychological adjustment to college, which is being published in a set of two books entitled College Student Psychological Adjustment, by Momentum Press. 

I have published a number of articles in this area, including a major meta-analytic review paper in the 2011 issue of Journal of Counseling Psychology that reviewed over 150 studies examining links between parent-student attachment relationships and college outcomes.  That review found that both mother-student and father-student relationships exert an enduring influence on students’ adjustment, especially in terms of students’ ability to separate smoothly during the college transition and develop satisfying relationships with peers.  These patterns were stronger for students who lived on campus than for those who were commuting to school from home.

My two books being published by Momentum Press pick up where this review paper left off.  The first book, College Student Psychological Adjustment: Theory, Methods, and Statistical Trends provides an overview of theoretical perspectives and research on the adjustment process.  I provide the latest statistics on numbers of students attending college in the United States today and note trends in the diversity of students attending college.  I also highlight some of the significant mental and physical health challenges students report while in college. I then review major theoretical perspectives on college development, including the work of Arthur Chickering, William Perry, Alexander Astin, Vincent Tinto, and, our own, Jeffrey Arnett, locating Arnett’s work in the context of a new developmental theory to capture many of the psychological dilemmas college student experience. The last two chapters of this book review college adjustment research, examining domains of functioning in college, methodological tools for studying the adjustment process, and examining adjustment outcomes for both majority and minority students. This book, due to be published by October of this year, is particularly valuable for students who may not know a lot about studying college students and who may be interested in designing their own study of college adjustment.

The second book, College Student Psychological Adjustment: Exploring Relational Dynamics that Predict Success has just been published and it focuses specifically on relational dynamics among college students. I examined five major relational figures that are important for all college students:  (1) Parents, (2) professors, (3) roommates, (4) friends, and (5) romantic partners. For each of these relationships, I examine the ingredients that make the relationship successful and examine problematic patterns that may derail college student success.  Just as an example, the chapter on parent-student relationships provides a detailed examination of the concept of helicopter parenting, reviewing the most recent research showing the ways in which it is problematic for college student development and adjustment. The final chapter of this book provides an overview of innovative, relationship enhancement intervention programs that have been tested on college students in hopes of improving students’ relationship functioning with peers and romantic partners, and thereby enhancing college adjustment. 

I hope that you will check out these two books and find them of value to your scholarly and teaching efforts, especially in more advanced classes that focus on lifespan development

al.  Here is the link to the publisher’s website, which provides more information about both books:

Also, the second book is available for purchase through the above website or through Amazon at:

Finally, if you just have more questions or want to discuss these books or my work more with me, you can always email me at

Thanks for reading this long post!