Purpose profiles among Chinese adolescents: Association with personal characteristics, parental support, and psychological adjustment

Yaoshan I. Li, Ching Ling Cheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The present study offers a nuanced understanding of the ways that adolescents in collectivist cultural contexts experience and develop their purpose engagement. We adopted a person-centered approach to categorize 450 Chinese adolescents into clusters based on their similarities on the dimensions of purpose exploration and commitment. Consistent with expectations, we found that adolescents with Achieved profiles were the most adaptive among all: they had the highest scores as to personal characteristics (e.g., hope, prosocial tendency, self-efficacy), highest parental support (e.g., parent–child attachment, autonomy facilitation, emotional support), highest life satisfaction, and lowest depressive emotions scores. Conversely, adolescents with Diffused profiles were the least adaptive. Adolescents with Uncommitted and Foreclosed profiles scored between those of Achieved and Diffused groups and, surprisingly, did not differ in most variables. Overall, the demonstrated linkages between purpose profiles, personal characteristics, parental support, and psychological adjustment have important implications for parents and adults who work with adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Positive Psychology
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • cluster analysis
  • positive youth development
  • purpose commitment
  • purpose exploration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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