Family Transitions Project
My research topic focuses on what factors correlate with maturity. This topic interests me because I have seen many of my peers act immature for their age, yet also others of the same age that seem beyond their years.In the study (Wu Jong 2013) researchers wanted to examine how much spirituality and mindfulness have an effect on a person’s maturity after looking at the influence of personality. There has not been much examination into other influences beside personality on the ways that people mature. Five hundred seventy people participated in this study. About 73.3% (n=418) were from Taiwan, 13.6% (n=78) from the United States, and 12.7% (n=72) from China. Women count for 63.9% (n=364) of the sample. The two major religious groups of the sample were Catholics and Buddhists. These participants were divided into six age groups: 18-25, 26-35, 36-45, 46-55, 56-65, and 65 and above. Participants were required to complete several questionnaires including those assessing mindfulness, spirituality, and personality. Maturity was also measured by having participants complete the Personal Growth Scale, the Self-Actualization Index, and the Self-Report Altruism Scale. The results indicated that those with signs of mindfulness also seemed to show higher levels of maturity. Although all qualities served to be in indicator of maturity, the facet Acting with Awareness, meaning that people pay their full attention to everything around them at all times, was the highest facet. The same results were found with spirituality and maturity. The highest facet on this scale was Universality, which means that people tend to think that everyone and everything is connected. Furthermore, the results indicated that having both spirituality and mindfulness has the biggest impact on someone’s maturity and that this finding is additive in predicting maturity. This study is not without limitations. For example, it is not known how well the measures were translated across cultural and linguistic boundaries. Furthermore, researchers used short versions of the questionnaires instead of the whole assessment. Also, the research design stopped causal interferences. Future research should aim to do the study again with people that can speak English. It would be interesting to see the differences of maturity between those that meditate and those that do not. It might also be helpful to use the Structural Equation Modeling procedures, which would give a better look at causal impact. Having a test before and after the experiment and including a control and experimental group could look at causes also. The results of this study should be looked at and put into everyday terms so that other ethnic groups can use the information as well.        The purpose of the article (Van Zalk, et. al, 2011) was to examine the effects of shyness in boys and girls and whether it was associated with advanced maturity and risk behaviors. Previous research has studied longitudinal effects in early-adolescent boys, but not both boys and girls. This longitudinal study focused on 750 students from seven middle schools (grades 7-9) in one municipality in Sweden for one year. Girls accounted for 52% (n=390) of the students. Students ranged in age from 13-15 (M=13.73) at Time 1. Students were given questionnaires to fill out while they were at school that assessed shyness, advanced maturity measured by subjective age and pubertal status, romantic involvement, peer victimization measured by personal harassment, victim of bullying at school, and victim of violence during free time, and risk behaviors measured by drunkenness, intercourse, risky drinking behavior, and impulsive sexual behavior. It was found in this study adolescents that were shy tended to be less romantically involved, and more likely to be bullied. Boys were found to be more likely to have high risk behavior than girls after they are mature. It is odd for shy adolescents to feel more mature. When this happens it is even more likely to guess that they will be mature later on in life. Nonshy boys that look older and perceive themselves as older are more likely to have impulsive sexual behavior. Additionally, if these boys participated in risky drinking at Time 1, then this also lead to impulsive sexual behavior. This connection was not as likely for girls. This leads to the fact that shyness could prevent boys from participating in risky behavior. Nonshy boys also might have drunkenness later on and were likely a victim of violence. It could be suggested that because some adolescents are shy they don’t participate in risk behaviors because they are worried about what others might think of them. This could be because of their temperament or self-consciousness. Overall, the study has found that being shy could prevent adolescents from participating in many behaviors. Although some of these behaviors may be needed to mature, one acts with more maturity by not participating in risk behaviors. The study was limited by only having the students fill out one questionnaire and only at two points in time instead of more. It could also be a problem that the measures were self-reported. In the future, it would be interesting to understand the explanations of shyness’ effects on social behavior which have yet to be tested. Future research should also take a look at why social fears and the age at which an individual views themselves would have a negative connection.In this study (Galambos, et. al, 2000) researchers attempted to prove that there is actually a group of young people called “adultoid”, meaning that they behave as if they are grownups without being psychologically mature enough to do so, and to examine what correlates with their maturity. In previous research the definition of adultoid was not operationalized and was not observed empirically. Adultoid adolescents were compared to immature and mature adolescents. Two hundred twenty three adolescents living in Canada were sampled. Forty-seven percent were male (n=105). There were 14 sibling pairs in the study, leading to 131 mothers that also participated and 145 mother reports. Participants were between the ages of 10-18 with girls average age (M=13.14 years, SD=2.1) being about a year older than boys (M=11.94 years, SD=1.2). Participants were evaluated while attending educational and athletic summer camps. They completing questionnaires in one hour sessions. The questionnaires measured psychosocial maturity by using the subscales self-reliance, identity, and work orientation from the Psychosocial Maturity Inventory. Problem behavior and subjective age were also measured on the questionnaires. Physical maturity was measured by judges by looking at photographs of participants, participants’ self-reported age and height, and also their scores on the Pubertal Development Scale. Participants filled out timetables measuring desired age, responsible age, and privileged age and also scales measuring social activity and industrious activity. After six months, mothers were mailed questionnaires measuring conflict, acceptance, adolescents’ perceived desired age, responsible and privileged ages, apprehensive parent, and mother-adolescent relationships. Results indicated that adolescents considered adultoid had lower psychosocial maturity and higher problem behavior and subjective age. These adolescents wanted to be older and to be treated as if they were older. They also seemed more physically mature. Results show that adultoids were the most social group but when compared to mature adolescents, they were less industrious. Adultoids reported that they had more conflict with their mothers, but results also indicated that when compared to immature adolescents, adultoids were more accepted by their mothers. In concordance with these results, mothers of adultoids also reported more conflict. Mothers of adultoids were shown to be more worried about their children than those of mature adolescents as well. A couple of limitations to this research is that it was correlational and that six months may have been too long of a time period between adolescents completing their questionnaires and mothers receiving theirs to complete in the mail. Future research should aim to replicate the study with a more diverse sample. Data should be collected using many different sources and more measures to evaluate what else may separate adultoid adolescents from other adolescents. It would also benefit research to create a longitudinal study.

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