When do you feel like an adult? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVwX1AR5wbY
Class expercise To what extent do you feel like an adult most of the time Not at all like an adult Somewhat like an adult Entirely like an adult Describe an instance in which you feel like an adult
Defining Adult experiences: Methods : Studied a large, diverse sample of young adults between the ages of 18 and 35 (N = 726), including: both UMass Boston students (n = 517) young adults who were neither attending nor had graduated from college (n = 209) Used open-ended questions to solicit incidences in which participants “really felt like an adult,” and coded for the traditional and non- traditional roles and experiences investigated variation by age and college status to explore how young adults’ subjective experiences of adulthood relate to developmental maturity and context.
Subjective Adulthood Much research in the last decade suggests an “in between,” or “not quite adult” status period for those aged 18-25 (Arnett, 2000).
In between status Researchers have measured experiences that youth feel “must be achieved before a person can be considered an adult” Items on this scale have been organized into five subscales: individualism (e.g., “accept responsibility for the consequences of your actions”), family capacities (e.g., “capable of caring for children”), norm compliance (e.g., “avoid drunk driving”), legal/chronological transitions (e.g., “reached age 18”), role transitions (e.g., “have at least one child”). Arnett consistently has found that young adults emphasize three criteria reflective of individualism: responsibility for one’s self, independent decision making, and financial independence.
New way of asking more open-ended interviews might yield a different breakdown of roles that youth associate with adulthood. processes are likely to be shaped by individuals’ age and life circumstances. we asked participants to describe a specific event in which they felt like an adult--a different lens into subjective experiences of adulthood.
Belief systems that underlie cultural patterns of thought and behavior—The Ethic of Autonomy Independence and self-sufficiency should be obtained before entering adult commitments Romantic love the basis for marriage-soul mate, 60% arranged marriage Romantic love Work should be an expression of identity Work Late teens through mid-twenties should be a time of fun and leisure Cultural Psychology of Emerging Adulthood
individualism (e.g., “accept responsibility for the consequences of your actions”) family capacities (e.g., “capable of caring for children”), norm compliance (e.g., “avoid drunk driving”), legal chronological transitions (e.g., “reached age 18”) role transitions (e.g., “have at least one child”). What roles must roles and experiences “must be achieved before a person can be considered an adult”
(1) not at all like an adult, (2) somewhat like an adult (3) entirely like an adult. Describe an instances when you really feel like an adult To what extent do you feel like an adult most of the time
Students (n = 625) were recruited through introductory and advanced psychology classes during the Fall 2007, Spring 2008, and Fall 2008 semesters, as well as through tables at a central location on campus. Non-college young adults (n = 265) were recruited through the Craigslist website for the same metropolitan area as the university. Participants responded to a survey advertisement, indicating their age (18- to 35 years old) and college status (i.e., whether they were attending or had graduated from a four-year university). Method
Subjective Adult Status 37.9% reported feeling “entirely like an adult 56.9% “somewhat like an adult” 4.3% not at all like an adult in their everyday lives. college subsample (n = 517) 32.2% reported feeling “entirely like an adult 62.7% “somewhat like an adult,” 4.5% “not at all like an adult.” non-college sample (n = 209) 52.7% reported feeling “entirely like an adult,” 43.5% “somewhat like an adult,” 3.8% “not at all like an adult.” Non-college students had greater subjective adulthood than college students, and older participants had significantly greater subjective adulthood than younger Asian participants had significantly lower subjective adulthood than non-Asian participants Results
International Patterns: Does one size fit all? The 5 features were based on 300 Americans 20-29 To what extent does it apply internationally? Developed countries: 18% US, Canada, Western Europe, Japan, Skoriea, Austrail and New Zealand Developing:, comprise most of the world’s population
Developed Countries Postsecondary ed Manufacturing-Information, IT Increase in age of marriage/parenthood In Europe, emerging adulthood is even later One in three still live at homestill live at home Govt. pays for college, provide generous unemployment Asisa different—collective, family obligation
Developing Only a minority experience “emerging adulthood” Vast majority marry around 20 and finish educaiton by late teens or earlier EA exists only among small but growing urban middle class
Cultural Psychology of EA: 4 beliefs Independence and self-sufficiency should be attained before entering into adult commitments Romantic love should be the basis of marriage Arranged marriage vs. soul mate Work should be an expression of one’s identity Need to make peace with dreams The years from late teens through mid-twenties should be a time of self-focused leisure
STILL RELEVANT Planners Delay entry as response to longer transition College, obstacles to establishing self-sufficient home Metropolitan areas More cohabitation Naturalists Traditional, rural, logical next step
Background Age risen, proportion that ever marry has fallen Rise in cohabitation Increase rates of divorce Growth of unmarried mothers Increase women in workforce, higher ed, access to contraception
Marriage decline vs. Resilience perspectives Decline Sees as negative, signs of a culture that overvalues indivual happiness and devalues commitment Resilience People can escape dysfunctional and abusive relationships
Three eras of Marriage Early 20 th century— institutionalize marriage-Love secondary to marriage itself Roles sharply defined Mid-Century Compassionate love, derive satisfaction from building family 1960’s onward Individualized love, weakening of norms
Young people’s Perspectives Naturalists (18%) Fast starters, happens without much thought, shotgun weddings Many break up, many see as mistake View as inevitable outcome of romantic relationships Marriage and kids high priority
Planners Have a different marriage mentality Don’t accept norm of inevitable marriage Race/ethicity, gender, and class matter less than SES and normative contexts Geography important determinant
College and graduation http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/2012/04/23/the- 13-most-useless-majors-from-philosophy-to- journalism.html#slide_3 http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/2012/04/23/the- 13-most-useless-majors-from-philosophy-to- journalism.html#slide_3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJJ5z78GE5A