psychology 445 the transition to adulthood prof jean rhodes jean rhodes@umb edu n.
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Psychology 445: THE TRANSITION TO ADULTHOOD Prof. Jean Rhodes Jean.rhodes@umb.edu. Mondays and Wed 2-3:15. Traditional Markers of Adulthood. Leaving home Completing School Entering the Workforce Getting Married Having Children. Three Important findings.

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psychology 445 the transition to adulthood prof jean rhodes jean rhodes@umb edu

Psychology 445: THE TRANSITION TO ADULTHOODProf. Jean RhodesJean.rhodes@umb.edu

Mondays and Wed 2-3:15

traditional markers of adulthood
Traditional Markers of Adulthood
  • Leaving home
  • Completing School
  • Entering the Workforce
  • Getting Married
  • Having Children
three important findings
Three Important findings
  • Becoming adult has become more gradual and varied
  • Families are often overburdened in extending support
  • Mismatch between young people and existing institutional supports
what s needed
What’s needed
  • Strengthen capacities of young people
  • Improve the institutions in which they move
becoming an adult a brief history
Becoming an adult: A brief history
  • During the first few decades of the 1900’s “adolescence” was brief
    • By late teens, only a small fraction still in school, most men began work
    • A lot stayed at home and marriage and childbearing did not happen immediately
    • Jobs bound to farming
  • Post WWII exception
    • Marriage and childbearing right after school
    • High paying jobs were plentiful, incomes grew quickly
    • By late 50’s adulthood was defined in terms of marriage and children
history cont
History cont
  • We are more like early 1900’s!
    • Becoming an adult was more gradual
  • But important differences
    • 95% consider the most important markers to be
      • Completing school
      • Establishing an independent household
      • Being employed full-time
    • BUT only about half consider it necessary to be married and have kids—considered life choices
definitions differ by social class important new realities
Definitions differ by Social class: Important new realities
  • Becoming adult ususaly means living on your own for a while
  • Necessity of higher education
  • It takes longer to secure income that could support a family
  • Marriage and family come significantly later
  • Options differ depending on racial/income characteristics
    • More young people of color/immigrants
college for all
College for All?
  • 10% drop out of high school (5% white, 10% black, 22% Latino)
  • Only ¼ of adults between 25-35 have a B.A. (27% white, 15% black, 9% Hispanic)
  • (only 5% graduate degrees)
  • Only 40% who enter 4 year colleges have a degree six years later (60% if parents have BA, 10% if not)
  • More than half of black young men are:
    • Not in school, military, or workforce!
harder to get ahead
Harder to get ahead
  • Globalization
  • International markets
  • New technologies
    • Wages and pensions have decreased
  • Increased need for college degree
delaying i do
Delaying “I do”
  • Acquiring education and job skills takes longer
    • Median age 1960’s 22, now 28
    • By 34, 70% married
  • Advances in contraception
  • Views on acceptability of living together
  • Nearly 40% of children born to unwed mothers
stark inequalities
Stark inequalities
  • Skills, resources, and opportunities vary by social class
    • Children in top quarter receive 70% more $$
    • Recession has amplified problem
  • Most support to more fragile families ends by 18th birthday
  • Underscores importance of investing in institutions
  • International perspective
institutions
Institutions
  • Community colleges
  • Service learning programs
  • The military
there are some benefits
There are some benefits…
  • Less rigid
  • More opportunities for women
  • Arnett