This preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.
Unformatted text preview: earch is to examine the mechanisms Personality Change 635 that underlie stability and change in personality during young adulthood.
Caspi and others have outlined a number of possible mechanisms that
might be involved in personality stability and change (Caspi, 1998; Caspi
& Roberts, 1999; Roberts, 1997). We would like to highlight a few
possibilities that we believe are particularly relevant to young adulthood.
First, some theorists have hypothesized that personality stability is
simply the result of living in a stable environment (e.g., Moss & Susman,
1980). In the present study, most of the participants remained in the same
university environment throughout the period examined. This raises the
possibility that we would have found less stability if we had examined
participants during the transition into or out of college, or participants
who were engaged in a more diverse range of life activities (e.g., entry
into the workforce). Second, as we noted earlier, some of the changes we
observed may reflect maturational changes that occur during adolescence
and young adulthood. Specifically, some theorists hypothesize that
neuro-developmental changes associated with adolescence (including
changes in neural circuitry and hormonal changes associated with puberty) produce profound disturbances in psychological functioning
(Hall, 1904; Simmons, Blyth, Van Cleave, & Bush, 1979). Thus, the
decline in Neuroticism observed in the present study may have reflected
a “recovery” from the generally elevated levels of anxiety and depression
that may occur during adolescence. Third, according to Erikson and other
lifespan developmental theorists, adolescence often entails a questioning
of one’s identity and a subsequent transformation of self and identity.
Identity consolidation, the continued investment in and evaluation of life
choices made in adolescence has been shown to predict increases in ego
resiliency in young adulthood (Pals, 1999). Thus, personality development might occur in tandem with identity development, and this possibility merits further research....
View Full Document
This note was uploaded on 12/02/2010 for the course PSYCH PSY BEH P2 taught by Professor Susanturkcharles during the Fall '10 term at UC Irvine.
- Fall '10