Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 34, Issue 6, pp 605–618

Identity Statuses Based on 4 Rather Than 2 Identity Dimensions: Extending and Refining Marcia's Paradigm

  • Koen Luyckx
  • Luc Goossens
  • Bart Soenens
  • Wim Beyers
  • Maarten Vansteenkiste
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10964-005-8949-x

Cite this article as:
Luyckx, K., Goossens, L., Soenens, B. et al. J Youth Adolescence (2005) 34: 605. doi:10.1007/s10964-005-8949-x

Abstract

Four identity dimensions (Commitment Making, Identification with Commitment, Exploration in Depth, and Exploration in Breadth) were used to derive identity statuses by means of cluster analysis in a sample of late adolescents. This strategy resulted in both a qualitative refinement and a quantitative extension of Marcia's (1966) model. Five clusters were retained. Four of those (the Achievement, Moratorium, Foreclosure, and Diffused Diffusion Cluster) bore a striking resemblance to Marcia's original identity statuses in terms of their definition and their associations with criterion variables. Adolescents in the fifth cluster, the Carefree Diffusion Cluster (low to moderate on both commitment dimensions and low on both exploration dimensions), scored as high as the 2 high Commitment Making clusters (i.e., the Achievement and Foreclosure Cluster) on several indicators of adjustment. Personality characteristics further differentiated these clusters in accordance with theory. The advantages of expanding the identity status paradigm, through additional distinctions that pertain to both commitment and exploration, are discussed and practical implications are outlined.

Key Words

identity statuses commitment exploration 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Koen Luyckx
    • 1
  • Luc Goossens
    • 2
  • Bart Soenens
    • 3
  • Wim Beyers
    • 4
  • Maarten Vansteenkiste
    • 5
  1. 1.Center for Developmental PsychologyCatholic University LeuvenLeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Developmental PsychologyCatholic University LeuvenBelgium
  3. 3.Catholic University LeuvenBelgium
  4. 4.Catholic University LeuvenBelgium
  5. 5.Catholic University LeuvenBelgium

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