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Identity and personality transactions and interactions in adolescence and young adulthood: associations with psychological adjustment and physiological processes.

When people are describing themselves, they typically refer to characteristics such as outgoing, friendly, and messy. Exactly these kinds of characteristics define ones personality. In adolescence (ages 12 to 18 years) and young adulthood (ages 19 to 30), another aspect of individuality, identity formation, also becomes more salient. Identity formation refers to whether individuals identify themselves with and commit themselves to choices in important developmental domains, such as education, friendships, work, and romantic relationships. Throughout the years, there have been a great deal of studies on personality and identity formation, but very few studies have examined these two key aspects of individuality together in the same design. The purpose of the current project is to get a grasp on how personality and identity relate to and interact with one another by pursuing three research goals: (1) studying how personality traits affect and are affected by occupational and romantic identity, and by life-transitions with regard to occupation and romantic relations; (2) examining whether identity formation affects the way personality is associated with internalizing (e.g., depression) and externalizing (e.g., aggression) problem behavior; and (3) examining how personality and identity are related to a physiological marker of stress, that is, the stress hormone cortisol.
Date:1 Oct 2010 →  30 Sep 2012
Keywords:Cortisol, Young adulthood, Adolescence, Identity formation, Personality, Five-factor model, Internalizin problems, Externalizing problems
Disciplines:Developmental psychology and ageing, Applied psychology