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ERIC Number: EJ1007928
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Intrinsic Aspirations and Personal Meaning across Adulthood: Conceptual Interrelations and Age/Sex Differences
Morgan, Jessica; Robinson, Oliver
Developmental Psychology, v49 n5 p999-1010 May 2013
The present study examined adult age and sex differences in self-reported aspirations and personal meaning. Young, midlife, and older adults (N = 2,557) from the United Kingdom or United States completed an online survey of their aspiration striving, aspiration importance, and personal meaning (subscales of Purposeful Life, Exciting Life, Accomplished Life, Principled Life, Valued Life). Predictions were made in line with humanistic and gerontology theories, which suggest that sources of personal meaning consolidate across the life span toward intrinsically motivated pursuits. Findings supported these predictions, showing that although there was a tendency for aspirations to decline with age, the proportion of intrinsically motivated aspirations increased, as did total meaning and the interrelationship between meaning and intrinsic aspirations. There were also gender differences in personal meaning and aspirations, which suggested a more pronounced midlife dip in intrinsic and purposive goal striving for men, and a greater focus on intrinsic aspirations in women. Developmental and cohort interpretations of these findings and directions for further research are discussed. (Contains 6 tables, 3 figures and 2 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom; United States