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Chapter 11: Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)

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1 Chapter 11: Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)

2 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Chapter Objectives To examine the concept of autonomy from parents and the conditions under which it is likely to be achieved To trace the development of gender identity in later adolescence, including a discussion of how the components of gender role identification that were relevant during the early‑school‑age period are revised and expanded

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Chapter Objectives (cont.) To describe the maturation of morality in later adolescence with special focus on the role of new cognitive capacities that influence moral judgments and the various value orientations that underlie moral reasoning To analyze the process of career choice, with attention to education and gender‑role socialization as two major influential factors

4 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Chapter Objectives (cont.) To describe the psychosocial crisis of later adolescence (individual identity versus identity confusion) the central process through which this crisis is resolved (role experimentation) the prime adaptive ego quality of fidelity to values and ideals, and the core pathology of repudiation To examine some of the challenges of social life in later adolescence that may result in high‑risk behaviors

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Autonomy from Parents Autonomy is a multidimensional task that is accomplished gradually over the course of later adolescence and early adulthood Autonomy is an ability regulate one’s own behavior with undue control from or dependence on one’s parents Autonomy requires independence of thoughts, emotions, and actions

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Autonomy from Parents (cont.) Beyond these physical requirements, autonomy involves a psychological sense of confidence about one’s unique point of view and an ability to express opinions and beliefs that may differ from those of one’s parents Differentiation is the extent to which the family-system encourages intimacy while supporting the expression of differences

7 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Autonomy from Parents: Leaving Home Living away form one’s parent’s household may be a symbol of independence; however , it is not as readily achievable in the age range 18 to 24 as it was in the past Parents and adolescent children have different views about the age at which children are expected to leave home Economic factors and social norms play a significant role in the timing of leaving home

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Autonomy from Parents: The College Experience Going away to college is an intermediate step between living at home and establishing a permanent residence before marriage College freshman express a variety of attitudes that suggest different views about their desire to be independent from their family The experience of entering college focuses new attention on one’s attachment relationships, specifically the revision of attachment to parents

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Autonomy from Parents: Self Sufficiency For students who live on campus, preoccupation with thoughts and concerns about their parents tend to diminish over the course of the first semester, while new relationships form and a new confidence in their independent decision making builds Making independent decisions, taking responsibility for one’s actions, and achieving some degree of financial independence is part of establishing a sense of self-sufficiency

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Gender Identity: The Role of Culture Acquisition of a set of beliefs, attitudes, and values about oneself as a man or a woman in many areas of social life, including intimate relationship, family, work, community, and religion All cultures construct gender-differentiated roles, and people expect one another to behave in certain ways because they are male or female In the United States, many people argue that gender-based role distinctions are inappropriate, at least as part of public life

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Gender Identity: The Role of Culture (cont.) Others ague that men and women should be considered equal, but that they should be treated in ways that take into account differences in their needs and capacities

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Gender Identity: Reevaluating Gender Constancy Later adolescents can appreciate that the use of gender labels is a social convention and that, apart form the genital basis of this label, there are wide individual differences within gender groups in most traits and abilities Later adolescents may realize that gender is not quite as fixed and constant as they may have believed

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Gender Identity: Reevaluating Gender Constancy (cont.) As later adolescents learn about cultural, institutional, interpersonal, and individual level gender-role expectations, they must integrate and synthesize them with their assessments of their personal needs and goals

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Gender Identity: Reevaluating Earlier Gender-Role Standards and Learning New Ones In later adolescence, young men and women begin to develop an analysis of what it takes to “get ahead”: in their social world, whether success is defined as finding a mate, getting a good job, being a good parent, or being popular The knowledge base regarding the implications and consequences of gender for each individual broadens as new understanding about adult roles is acquired

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Gender Identity: Reevaluating Earlier Gender-Role Standards and Learning New Ones (cont.) Gender role standards may change within one’s lifetime

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Gender Identity: Revising One’s Childhood Identifications The component of parental identifications that contributes to gender identity is also reviewed and revised in later adolescence During this time, young people begin to encounter a wide range of possible targets for identification

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Gender Identity: Adding a Sexual Dimension to Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Later adolescents add a sexual dimension to their gender identity that did not play much or a role in their child gender-role identifications Physical attractiveness become more salient during this time Maturation of the hormonal system, which influence emotional arousal as well as sexual urges, contributes to one’s gender identity Research on sexual orientation suggests that later adolescence is a common time for the emergence of a homosexual identity

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Gender Identity: Integrating One’s Gender-Role Identity If later adolescents become aware that their gender prevents them from having access to resources, influence, and decision-making authority, they are likely to experience a decline in their gender-role preference

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Gender Identity: Integrating One’s Gender-Role Identity (cont.) If later adolescents perceive that, apart from real differences in ability, one gender group is treated with greater respect, given more opportunities, and responded to with more attention or greater rewards, then their gender-role preferences are likely to be recalibrated

20 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Internalized Morality: New Cognitive Capacities & Experiences that Promote Moral Reasoning Later adolescents explore the distinction between social conventions and moral issues Later adolescents bring new cognitive capacities to the arena of moral decision making Later adolescents are able to consider the multiple perspectives that are possible in a moral situation

21 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Internalized Morality: New Cognitive Capacities & Experiences that Promote Moral Reasoning (cont.) They are increasingly aware of the rights and needs of others, and they are able to step outside the situation in order to examine how an action may satisfy their own needs but harm others Through participation in thought-provoking discussions or challenging life experiences, moral reasoning can advance to the next higher level

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Internalized Morality: New Cognitive Capacities & Experiences that Promote Moral Reasoning (cont.) Exposure to a diversity of information, relationships, and worldviews stimulates moral reasoning

23 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Internalized Morality: Stages of Moral Development Preconventional Level, Stage I: From age 4 to 10, children judge an action as morally justifiable based on the immediate consequences of the behavior and the approval of powerful authority figures Conventional Level, Stage II: From age 10 to 18, reflects a concern about the maintenance of the existing rules and laws, and a respect for legitimate authority

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Internalized Morality: Stages of Moral Development (cont.) Postconventional Level, Stage III: From age 18 into adulthood, brings an awareness of social, cultural, and political processes that result in the formulation of rules and laws

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Internalized Morality: Expansions to Kohlberg’s View of Moral Reasoning Moral reasoning is based on a specific method, one in which individuals are asked to reach judgments about a particular type of moral dilemma Moral reasoning is influenced largely by the situational context in which the dilemma is posed Field of moral reasoning focuses on whether women and men approach ethical decision making differently

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Figure 11.1 Factors Affecting the Gender Role Socialization and Career Decision-Making Process

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Figure 11.2 Seven Phases of Career Decision Making

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The Psychosocial Crisis: Individual Identity Versus Identity Confusion The Private and The Public Faces of Identity The private self is a sense of self, which refers to one’s uniqueness and unity, a subjective experience of being self-reflective The public self includes the many roles one plays and the expectations of others

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The Content and Evaluation Components of Identity The significance one places on various aspects of the identity content The assessment of the importance of certain content areas in relation to others influences the use of resources, the direction of certain decisions, and the kinds of experiences that may be perceived as most personally rewarding or threatening Both the content and evaluation components of identity may change over the life course

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Case Study: Houston A. Baker, JR. Thought Questions What elements of the identity process are evident in this case? What are some of the characteristics of Professor Watkins that may have made him a target for identification for Houston Baker? What aspects of the college environment are likely to stimulate the identity process? Have you ever had an intellectual experience that gave you a “new sense of yourself”? What combination of factors come together to permit that to happen?

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The Psychosocial Crisis: Identity Formation for Males and Females Questions have been raised about the process of identity formation and its outcome for young men and women in our society Some investigators have argued that the concept of identity as it has been formulated is a reflection of a male-oriented culture that focuses heavily on occupation and ideology rather than on interpersonal commitments

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The Psychosocial Crisis: Identity Formation for Males and Females (cont.) Other researchers point out that Erikson’s construct of personal identity is embedded in relational context Men and women appear to handle the process of role experimentation and identity achievement somewhat differently

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The Central Process of Role Experimentation: Psychosocial Moratorium Psychosocial Moratorium is a period of free experimentation before a final identity is achieved The concept of psychosocial moratorium has been partially incorporated into some college programs that permit students to enroll in pass-fail courses before they select a major

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The Central Process of Role Experimentation: Psychosocial Moratorium (cont.) As parents observe the process of role experimentation, they may become concerned because their adolescent son or daughter appears to be abandoning the traditional family value orientation or lifestyle

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Figure 11.3 Relations Among Identity Status, Level of Exploration, and Level of Commitment

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Case Study: Turning Points in the Identity Process Thought Questions How are turning points different from role experimentation? What might determine whether a turning point leads to identity achievement or identity confusion? What is the difference between the events that Sullivan experienced, and those that Rachel experienced? How might the differences in these two kinds of events relate to subsequent identity work?

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Case Study: Turning Points in the Identity Process (cont.) Thought Questions (cont.) What factors might be necessary to preserve the focus and sense of purpose that are evoked in these critical life events? For example, how might family support, the response of close friends, or opportunities fro enacting new roles influence whether these changes are sustained?

41 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Role Experimentation and Ethnic Identity Efforts to understand one’s ethnic identity and to clarify one’s commitment to particular ethnic subculture lead to self-definition that facilitates work on personal identity as well A five stage model of ethnic minority identity development Conformity Dissonance Resistance and immersion Introspection Articulation and awareness

42 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
The Prime Adaptive Ego Quality and the Core Pathology Fidelity to values and ideologies is the ability to sustain loyalties freely pledged in spite of the inevitable contradictions and confusions of value systems Repudiation is the rejection of roles and values that are viewed as alien to oneself

43 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Applied Topic: The Challenges of Social Life Unwanted Sexual Attention Sexual assault, sexual harassment, and stalking These experiences can have negative consequences for young people, especially if the attention goes on for a long time and there is no way to avoid it Some young people will confront the person, especially if they view the behavior as severe, but generally avoid confrontation if the person is in a position of authority

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Applied Topic: The Challenges of Social Life (cont.) Binge Drinking Has become a socially acceptable activity on many college campuses Many celebrations and rituals are centered around the performance of unique feats of consumption

45 Later Adolescence (18 – 24 Years)
Applied Topic: The Challenges of Social Life (cont.) Sexually Transmitted Diseases Include a wide range of bacterial, viral, and yeast infections that are transmitted through forms of sexual contact Basic practices for preventing STDs include: limiting the number of sexual partners, consistent use of condoms during sexual intercourse, avoiding unprotected contact during any type or genital activity, and refraining from sexual intercourse when either you or your partner is infected


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