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ERIC Number: EJ992523
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 45
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Adolescent Turning Points: The Association between Meaning-Making and Psychological Well-Being
Tavernier, Royette; Willoughby, Teena
Developmental Psychology, v48 n4 p1058-1068 Jul 2012
Research findings indicate that the ability to create meaning out of turning points (i.e., significant life experiences) is related to psychological well-being. It is not clear, however, whether individuals who report meaning-making and higher well-being are better adjusted "prior" to the experience of their turning point event. This study examined whether meaning-making and timing of turning points would be associated with higher scores on well-being. Participants were 418 Grade 12 students (209 of whom reported having had a turning point event and a matched group of 209 adolescents who did not report having had a turning point event). This subset of participants was taken from a larger longitudinal study of 803 (52% female) Grade 12 Canadian students (M age = 17 years). All participants completed well-being measures 3 years prior, when they were in Grade 9. Meaning-making was significantly associated with higher psychological well-being, controlling for Grade 9 scores on well-being. Importantly, adolescents who reported meaning-making in Grade 12 did not differ on well-being "prior" to the experience of their turning point event, when they were in Grade 9, from adolescents who did not report meaning-making. These findings highlight the importance of examining meaning-making in relation to positive adjustment among adolescents reporting a significant life-changing event. Limitations regarding the use of survey measures and the generalizability of the results to a culturally diverse group of adolescents are discussed. (Contains 3 tables and 1 footnote.)
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 12; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada