Syllabus - Spring 2003
SOC 4090/5090 (3 cr)
Topics in Sociology: Adolescence and the Transition to Adulthood
10:10 - 11:25 AM, Wednesday and Friday
Blegen Hall 130
Jeylan Mortimer, Instructor
1014A Social Sciences Building
(612)624-6333 (to leave messages and make appointments)
Office Hours: Monday 9:15-10, Wednesday, 11:45-2, and by appointment
Trends in the United States and throughout the world are changing both the experience of adolescence and the character of adult roles. This course examines broad societal trends that are expected to continue to shape the adolescent experience as young people look forward to their futures and begin to make their transitions to adulthood. While the emphasis is on the U.S., the course considers variability within and across societies. We will consider how contemporary scholars define this stage of life (when it begins and ends) and its various manifestations (as “precocious” adolescence, “emerging” or “delayed” adulthood, etc.). At the microsocial level, the immediate contexts of adolescents are examined--the family, the school, the peer group, and the workplace. We examine how young people construct their futures, as well as the ways in which their social locations and resources provide opportunities and constrain likely possibilities. At the macrostructural level, key demographic, technological, and institutional transformations are assessed, including increasing diversity in family structures, the expansion of higher education, shifts in the workforce, and changes in the institutions of criminal justice and health care. We evaluate the adequacy of adolescents' preparation for adult interpersonal relationships, the full-time work role, and responsible citizenship. Finally, changes in policy are considered that could possibly enhance adolescents' preparation for adulthood.
Adolescents' Preparation for the Future: Perils and Promise, edited by Reed Larson, Bradford Brown, and Jeylan T. Mortimer. New York: Blackwell Press, 2002. (Designated B on syllabus)
The Changing Adolescent Experience. Societal Trends and the Transition to Adulthood, edited by Jeylan T. Mortimer and Reed W. Larson. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002 (Designated C on syllabus)
Chapters from these texts are required readings. Other required readings are available in the course packet. These are numbered.
Students are expected to read the required assignments prior to class meetings, to come to class ready to consider the topic for the day, and to participate actively in the class discussions. There will be two exams, both take-home format, and a term paper.
Topic: Due January 31. Before January 31, students must discuss their topics with the instructor, either after class, during office hours, or at another agreed-upon time.
Abstract (1 page) and Outline (1 page): Due February 14.
List of references: Due February 26.
Literature review: Due March 26.
Method: Primary Data Source, Measures, Mode of Analysis (required for senior projects;
optional for others): Due March 26
First Draft of paper: Due April 18 (Optional)
Paper: Due May 9 (10-15 pp)
Mid-semester Exam 25% (due March 12)
Final Exam 30% (due May 15)
Paper 30% (due May 9)
Class Participation 15%
I. Introduction: Adolescence as a Stage in the Life Course
(1) Shanahan, M. J. 2000. "Adolescence." Pp. 1-17 in E. Borgatta (ed.), Encyclopedia of Sociology. Boston: Macmillan.
II. Variation in Adolescence and Transition to Adulthood within and across Societies
A. Social Stratification (social class, race/ethnicity)
January 24, 29
1. Social Class
(2) Furstenberg, F. F., Jr., et al. 1999. Managing to Make It: Urban Families and Adolescent Success. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. (Pp. 184-213)
Schneider, B., and D. Stevenson. 1999. The Ambitious Generation: America's Teenagers. Motivated but Directionless. New Haven: Yale University Press. (Pp. 15-55)
Newman, Katherine. 1999. No Shame in My Game. The Working Poor in the Inner City. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. (Pp. 3-38)
January 31 Term paper topic due
(3) Burton, et al. 1996. "Ethnographic Insights on Social Context and Adolescent Development among Inner-City African-American Teens." Pp. 395- 418 in Richard Jessor, Anne Colby, and Richard A. Shweder (eds.), Ethnography and Human Development. Context and Meaning in Social Inquiry, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
(4) Call, K. T., and McNall, M. 1992. "Poverty, Ethnicity, Youth Adjustment: A Comparison of Poor Hmong and Non-Hmong Adolescents." Pp. 373-392 in W. Meeus, et al. (eds.), Adolescence, Careers and Cultures. Berlin: De Gruyter. (YDS 21)
(5) Lynch, Mary Ellen. 1991. "Gender Intensification." Pp. 389-391 in R. M. Lerner, et al. (eds.), Encyclopedia of Adolescence. Vol. 1. New York: Garland.
(6) Kimmel, E. B., with T. Rudolph. 1998 "Growing Up Female." Pp. 42-64 in K. Borman and B. Schneider (eds.), The Adolescent Years: Social Influences and Educational Challenges. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Johnson, et al. 2001. "Adolescents' Anticipations of Work-Family Conflict in a Changing Societal Context." Pp. 233-261 in T. J. Owens and S. Hofferth (eds.), Children of the Millennium: Where Have We Come From Where Are We Going? Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.
Simmons, R. G., and Blyth, D. A. 1987. Moving into Adolescence. The Impact of Pubertal Change and School Context. New York: Aldine. (Chapter 14)
B. Variation across Societies and Historical Periods
(7) Stevenson, H. W. and A. Zusho. 2002. "Adolescence in China and Japan." Pp. 141-170 in B. B. Brown, et al. (eds.), The World's Youth: Adolescence in Eight Regions of the Globe, New York: Cambridge.
Guest Visitors: Chika Shinohara and Wanling Lee (Sociology graduate students from Japan and China)
Marilyn Booth. 2002. "Arab Adolescents Facing the Future. Enduring Ideals and Pressures to Change." Pp. 207-242 in B. B. Brown, et al., (eds.), The World's Youth: Adolescence in Eight Regions of the Globe, New York: Cambridge.
Elder, G. H., Jr. 1974. Children of the Great Depression. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Arnett, J. J. 2002. "Adolescents in Western Countries in the 21st Century. Vast opportunities--for All?" Pp. 307-343 in B. B. Brown et al., (eds.), The World's Youth: Adolescence in Eight Regions of the Globe, New York: Cambridge.
III. Contexts of Adolescent Development
(8) Shanahan, M. J., and B. Flaherty. 2001. “Dynamic Models of Adolescent Time Use Strategies.” Child Development 72:385-401. (YDS 71)
(9) Larson, R., and S. Verma. 1999. "How Children and Adolescents around the World Spend Time: Work, Play and Developmental Opportunities." Psychological Bulletin 125:701-736.
Call, K. T., and J. T.Mortimer. 2001. Arenas of Comfort in Adolescence: A Study of Adjustment in Context. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. (Chapter 1, Pp. 1-25)
February 14 Term paper abstract and outline due
A. The Family
(10) Steinberg, L., and N. Darling. 1994. "The Broader Context of Social Influence in Adolescence." Pp. 25-45 in R. Silbereisen and E. Todt (eds.), Adolescence in Context. New York: Springer-Verlag.
Ryu, S., and J. T. Mortimer. 1996. "The 'Occupational Linkage Hypothesis' Applied to Occupational Value Formation in Adolescence." Pp. 167-190 in J. T. Mortimer and M. D.
Finch (eds.). Adolescents, Work, and Family: An Intergenerational Developmental Analysis. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
Steinberg, et al. 1991. "Authoritative Parenting and Adolescent Adjustment Across Varied Ecological Niches." Journal of Research on Adolescence 1:19-36.
B. School, Peer Group, and Community Organizations
(11) Brown, B. B., and W. Theobald. 1998. "Learning Contexts beyond the Classroom: Extracurricular Activities, Community Organizations, and Peer Groups." Pp. 109-141 in K. Borman and B. Schneider (eds.), The Adolescent Years: Social Influences and Educational Challenges. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
J. S. Coleman. 1961. The Adolescent Society: The Social Life of the Teenager and Its Impact on Education. Glencoe, IL: The Free Press.
Eccles, J. S., S. Lord, and C. M. Buchanan. 1996. "School Transitions in Early Adolescence: What are We Doing to Our Young People?" Pp. 251-284 in J. A. Graber, J. Brooks-Gunn, and A.C. Petersen (eds.), Transitions through Adolescence: Interpersonal Domains and Context.
Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
February 21, 26, 28 Feb. 26 Term paper references due
(12) Michael Shanahan, et al. 1996. "Adolescent Earnings and Relationships with Parents: The Work-Family Nexus in Urban and Rural Ecologies." Pp. 97-128 in J. T. Mortimer and M. D. Finch (eds.), Adolescents, Work, and Family: An Intergenerational Developmental Analysis,. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. (YDS 50)
(13) Mortimer, J. T., et al. 1999. "How Do Prior Experiences in the Workplace Set the Stage for Transitions to Adulthood?" Pp. 131-159 in A. Booth, et al. (eds.), Transitions to Adulthood in a Changing Economy: No Work, No Family, No Future? Westport, CT: Praeger. (YDS 70)
Bachman, J. and J. Schulenberg. 1993. "How Part-time Work Intensity Relates to Drug Use, Problem Behavior, Time Use, and Satisfaction among High School Seniors: Are these Consequences, or Merely Correlates?" Developmental Psychology 29:220-235.
Call, K. T. 1996. "Adolescent Work as an 'Arena of "Comfort' Under Conditons of Family Discomfort." Pp. 129-166 in J. T. Mortimer and M. D. Finch (eds.), Adolescents, Work, and Family: An Intergenerational Developmental Analysis. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
IV. Macrostructural Trends affecting Adolescence
C Mortimer and Larson, "Macrostructural Trends and the Reshaping of Adolescence" (Pp. 1-17)
B Larson, "Globalization, Societal Change, and New Technologies: What they Mean for the Future of Adolescence." (Pp. 1-30)
A. Demographic Change
C Fussell, "Youth in Aging Societies" (Pp. 18-51)
Fussell, E., and M. Greene. 2002. "Demographic Trends affecting Youth around the World. In B. B. Brown, R. Larson, and T. S. Saraswathi (eds.), The World's Youth: Adolescence in Eight Regions of the Globe. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Mid-term exam: Due March 12
March 12, 14
B. Technological Change
C Anderson, "Youth and Information Technology" (Pp. 175-207)
C Hellenga, "Social Space, the Final Frontier: Adolescents on the Internet" (Pp. 208-249)
Guest Lecture: Professor Ron Anderson, "Globalization, Technological Change, and Education" (March 14)
March 17-21 Spring Break
C. Institutional Change
March 26 Term paper literature review and method due
1. Trends in the Family
Casper, Lynne M. Casper and Suzanne M. Bianchi. Continuity and Change in the American Family. Sage, 2002. (Pp. 1-66, Chapter 1. “Changing Families in a Changing Society” and Chapter 2. “Cohabitation.”)
Goldscheider, F. 1997. “Family Relationships and Life Course Strategies for the 21st Century.” Pp. 73-85 in S. Dreman (ed.), The Family on the Threshold of the 21st Century: Trends and Implications, Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Booth, A., and A. C. Crouter. 1998. Men in Families: When do they Get Involved? What Difference does it Make? Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
2. Educational Expansion
(14) Walters, P. B. 2000. "The Limits of Growth. School Expansion and School Reform in Historical Perspective." Pp. 243-261 in M. Hallinan (ed.), Handbook of the Sociology of Education. New York: Kluwer/Plenum. (Start after heading, "School Expansion.")
(15) Pallas, A. M. 2000. "The Effects of Schooling on Individual Lives." Pp. 499-525 in M. Hallinan (ed.), Handbook of the Sociology of Education. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.
Lofland, J. 1970. "The Youth Ghetto." Pp. 756-778 in E. O. Laumann, P. M. Siegel, and R. W. Hodge (eds.), The Logic of Social Hierarchies. Chicago: Markham.
3. Health Care
C Ozer, et al., "Adolescent Health Care in the U.S.: Implications and Projections for the New Millenium" (Pp. 129-174)
B Call, et al., "Adolescent Health and Well-Being in the 21st Century: A Global Perspective." (Pp. 69-98)
Guest Lecture: Kathleen Call, "Adolescent and Youth Access to Health Care"
4. Criminal Justice
C Cullen and Wright, "Criminal Justice in the Lives of American Adolescents: Choosing the Future" (Pp. 88-128)
IV. The Transition to Adulthood
A. Trends in the Transition to Adulthood
(16) Mortimer, J. T., and Aronson, P. 2000. “Adulthood.” Pp. 25-41 in E. F. Borgatta and R. J. V. Montgomery (eds.), Encyclopedia of Sociology, Vol. 1, 2nd edition.
(17) Shanahan, M. J. 2000. “Pathways to Adulthood in Changing Societies: Variability and Mechanisms in Life Course Perspective.” Annual Review of Sociology 26:667-692.
(18) Arnett, J. 2000. "Emerging Adulthood: A Theory of Development from the Late Teens Through the Twenties." American Psychologist 55:469-480.
Buchmann, M. 1989. The Script of Life in Modern Society. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Modell, J. 1989. Into One's Own. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Cooney, T., and J. T. Mortimer. 1999. "Family Structure Differences in the Timing of Leaving Home: Exploring Mediating Factors." Journal of Research on Adolescence 9:367-393.
B. Adolescent Agency, Continuity/Discontinuity, and Turning Points
(19) McMorris, B., and C. Uggen. 2000. "Alcohol and Employment in the Transition to Adulthood." Journal of Health and Social Behavior 41:276-294. (YDS 84)
(20) Sampson, R. J., and J. H. Laub. Forthcoming. "Desistance from Crime over the Life Course." In J. T. Mortimer and M. J. Shanahan (eds), Handbook of the Life Course. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.
(21) Mortimer, J. T., and J. Staff. Forthcoming. "Stress-Sensitization vs. Stress Inoculation: The Impact of Early Work Stressors on Young Adult Mental Health." Development and Psychopathology. (YDS 107)
Schulenberg, J. E., et al. Forthcoming. "How and Why the Understanding of Developmental Continuity and Discontinuity is Important: The Sample Case of Long-Term Consequences of Adolescent Substance Use." In J. T. Mortimer and M. J. Shanahan (eds), Handbook of the Life Course. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.
Mortimer, J. T. 1994. "Individual Differences as Precursors of Youth Unemployment." Pp. 172-198 in A. Petersen and J. T. Mortimer (eds.), Youth Unemployment and Society, edited by New York: Cambridge University Press.
C. Preparation for Adult Relationships
B Larson, et al., "Changes in Adolescents' Interpersonal Experiences: Are they Being Prepared for Adult Relationships in the 21st Century?" (Pp. 31-68)
Aronson, Pamela J. 1999. "The Balancing Act: Young Women's Expectations and Experiences of Work and Family." Pp. 55-83 in T. L. Parcel (ed.), Research in the Sociology of Work. Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.
Rossi, A. 1979. "Transition to Parenthoood." Pp.132-145 in P. I. Rose (ed.), Socialization and the Life Cycle. New York: St. Martins Press.
April 18, 23, 30 April 18 First draft of term paper due (optional)
D. Trends in Education, Work, and the Transition from School to Work
C Kerckhoff, "The Transition from School to Work" (Pp. 52-87)
B Shanahan, et al. "Adolescence and Adult Work in the 21st Century." (Pp. 99-120)
(22) Mortimer, J. T., et al. 2002. "The Process of Occupational Decision-making: Patterns During the Transition to Adulthood." Journal of Vocational Behavior 61:1-27. (YDS 93)
(23) Huiras, J., et al. 2000. "Career Jobs, Survival Jobs, and Employee Deviance: A Social Investment Model of Workplace Misconduct." Sociological Quarterly 42:245-263. (YDS 90)
Hamilton, S. F. 1990. Apprenticeship for Adulthood: Preparing Youth for the Future. New York: Free Press.
Mortimer, J. T., and H. Krüger. 2000. “Pathways from School to Work in Germany and the United States.” Pp. 475-497 in M. T. Hallinan (ed.), Handbook of the Sociology of Education. New York: Plenum.
Brinton, M. 2000. "Social Capital in the Japanese Youth Labor Market: Labor Market Policy, Schools, and Norms." Policy Sciences 33:289-306.
Kariya, T., and J. E. Rosenbaum. Forthcoming. "The Incentive Divide: Stratified Incentives and Life Course Behaviors. In J. T. Mortimer and M. J. Shanahan (eds.), Handbook of the Life Course. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.
Presentation: Career Development Office (date to be announced)
Paul Timmins and Janelle Johnson
"How Colleges and Universities Help Their Graduates Find Jobs"
April 25 No Class. Students are invited to attend the Life Course Center's Mini-Conference, “Social Support in Diverse Populations through the Life Course”, 1114 Social Sciences Building
B Youniss, et al., "Youth Civic Engagement in the 21st Century." (Pp. 121-148)
Presentation: Peace Corps Representative, Shannon Skally
Johnson, M. K., et al. 1998. "Volunteerism in Adolescence: A Process Perspective." Journal of Research on Adolescence 8:309-332.
May 7, 9 May 9 Term paper due
V. Social Policy
B Larson, et al. "Conclusions: Adolescents' Preparation for the Future." (Pp. 159-166)
C Youniss and Ruth, "Approaching Policy for Adolescent Development in the 21st Century."
B Pittman, et al. "Social Policy Supports for Adolescence in the 21st Century: Framing Questions." (Pp. 149-158)
Schneider, B. and D. Stevenson. 1999. The Ambitious Generation. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Final Exam due: May 15, 4:00 PM, 909 Social Sciences Building