ERIC Number: EJ1116009
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Peer Influence on Gender Identity Development in Adolescence
Kornienko, Olga; Santos, Carlos E.; Martin, Carol Lynn; Granger, Kristen L.
Developmental Psychology, v52 n10 p1578-1592 Oct 2016
During adolescence, gender identity (GI) develops through a dialectic process of personal reflection and with input from the social environment. Peers play an important role in the socialization of gendered behavior, but no studies to-date have assessed peer influences on GI. Thus, the goal of the present study was to examine peer influences on four aspects of adolescents' GI in racially and ethnically diverse 7th- and 8th-grade students (N = 670; 49.5% boys, M age = 12.64) using a longitudinal social network modeling approach. We hypothesized stronger peer influence effects on between-gender dimensions of GI (intergroup bias and felt pressure for gender conformity) than on within-gender dimensions of GI (typicality and contentedness). Consistent with expectations, we found significant peer influence on between-gender components of GI--"intergroup bias" among 7th and 8th graders as well as "felt pressure for gender conformity" among 8th graders. In contrast, within-gender components of GI showed no evidence of peer influence. Importantly, these peer socialization effects were evident even when controlling for tendencies to select friends who were similar on gender, "gender typicality, and contentedness" (8th graders only). Employing longitudinal social network analyses provides insights into and clarity about the roles of peers in gender development.
Descriptors: Adolescents, Peer Influence, Sexual Identity, Social Influences, Grade 7, Grade 8, Student Diversity, Longitudinal Studies, Hypothesis Testing, Socialization, Friendship, Social Networks, Middle School Students, Student Surveys, Statistical Analysis, Gender Issues
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 7; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Grade 8
Authoring Institution: N/A