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1-143 - Adolescents' ethnic and personal identity across the globe: Development, context, and social exclusion

Thu, April 6, 2:00 to 3:30pm, Hilton Austin, Meeting Room 408

Session Type: Paper Symposium

Integrative Statement

This symposium brings together a set of studies investigating identity development as a key developmental task in adolescence. Together, the presentations in this symposium illustrate the importance of adolescents’ identity development, contextual predictors of identity development and the buffering role of having a strong ethnic identity for minority groups across Europe. Both longitudinal and cross-cultural studies of adolescent identity development will be presented from the Netherlands, Greece, Albania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Italy, Kosovo, and Romania.
The first longitudinal study (N = 494, Mage T1= 13.3 years), tested a central assumption of identity theory that uncertainty about current identity commitments precedes commitment making in the identity formation process across adolescence. Results supported this assumption for interpersonal identity. However, for educational identity, higher identity commitments predicted lower identity uncertainty across adolescence, but not vice versa.
The second longitudinal study (N = 685, Mage T1=15.9 years) tested two contrasting theoretical perspectives on the direction of effects between personal identity development and romantic attachment. Results supported attachment theory more than identity theory, such that quality of attachment to the romantic partner was a stronger predictor of identity formation than vice versa.

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