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ERIC Number: EJ1055863
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
I Wish I Had (Not) Taken a Gap-Year? The Psychological and Attainment Outcomes of Different Post-School Pathways
Parker, Philip D.; Thoemmes, Felix; Duineveld, Jasper J.; Salmela-Aro, Katariina
Developmental Psychology, v51 n3 p323-333 Mar 2015
Existing gap-year research indicates a number of benefits of a gap-year at the end of school and before university enrollment. Life span theory of control, however, suggests that direct goal investment, rather than delay, at developmental transitions is associated with more adaptive outcomes. Comparing these perspectives, the authors undertook 2 studies: 1 in Finland (N = 384, waves = 3) and 1 in Australia (N = 2,259, waves = 5) both with an initial time wave in the last year of high school. The authors explored the effects of a gap-year on both psychological and attainment outcomes using an extensive propensity score matching technique. The Finnish study found no difference in growth in goal commitment, effort, expectations of attainment and strain, or in actual university enrollment in those planning to enter university directly versus those who plan to take a gap-year. The Australian study found no difference in growth in outlooks for the future and career prospects, and life satisfaction between gap-year youth and direct university entrants. However, the study did find that gap-year students were more likely to drop out of a university degree. Implication for theory and practice are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia; Finland
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A