ERIC Number: ED277908
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Midlife and Midcareer Transitional Factors: Precursors of Successful Aging.
Boylan, Richard J.; Hawkes, Glenn R.
Past research has examined middle adulthood as a developmental process with outcomes predictive of development into old age. A study was undertaken to explore adult psychological and career development from an ecological perspective taking into account factors that influence and modify self-perception, values, identity, and social interaction. A survey assessing demographic, attitudinal, marital, parenting, physiological, psychological, spiritual, and career features of middle-aged men was completed by 584 men between the ages of 38 and 49 who were employed in middle management positions. The results confirmed three hypotheses: (1) by midlife only a minority of middle managers still maintain a dream of top occupational attainment; (2) the majority of middle managers shift their achievement motivation from job advancement to job mastery within their current occupational niche; and (3) the majority of middle managers experience some midlife transition stress which is buffered by available and satisfactory social support. The hypothesis that attention to community service would increase during midlife was not supported. Five factors were identified as possible precursors of successful aging attitudes. The results suggest that occupation ceases having a major role in determining male identity development around midlife, while the roles of interpersonal, hedonic, and spiritual factors become more prominent. Support was found for an ecological approach to the study of lifespan human development. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: California Univ., Davis. Agricultural Experiment Station.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society (39th, Chicago, IL, November 19-23, 1986).