Value stability and change during self-chosen life transition: self-selection versus socialization effects

Bardi, Anat, Buchanan, Kathryn E., Goodwin, Robin, Slabu, Letitia and Robinson, Mark (2014) Value stability and change during self-chosen life transition: self-selection versus socialization effects. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 106 (1). pp. 131-147. ISSN 0022-3514 (doi:10.1037/a0034818)

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Three longitudinal studies examine a fundamental question regarding adjustment of personal values to self-chosen life transitions: Do values fit the new life setting already at its onset, implying value-based self-selection? Or do values change to better fit the appropriate and desirable values in the setting, implying value socialization? As people are likely to choose a life transition partly based on their values, their values may fit the new life situation already at its onset, leaving little need for value socialization. However, we propose that this may vary as a function of the extent of change the life transition entails, with greater change requiring more value socialization. To enable generalization, we used 3 longitudinal studies spanning 3 different life transitions and different extents of life changes: vocational training (of new police recruits), education (psychology vs. business students), and migration (from Poland to Britain). Although each life transition involved different key values and different populations, across all 3 studies we found value fit to the life situation already early in the transition. Value socialization became more evident the more aspects of life changed as part of the transition, that is, in the migration transition. The discussion focuses on the implications of these findings for research on values and personality change, as well as limitations and future directions for research.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Published Online First November 11, 2013
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
Item ID: 15547
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Depositing User: Letitia Slabu
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2015 15:41
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:33

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