Journal of Family and Economic Issues

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 75–88 | Cite as

Relative Work and Family Role Centralities: Beliefs and Behaviors Related to the Transition to Adulthood

  • Scott S. HallEmail author
  • Brian J. Willoughby
Original Paper


The current study of 434 young adults investigated the relative centralities of anticipated adult roles. Based on assigned percentages to career, marriage, and parenthood roles, five distinct relative centrality profiles were created: Child Centered, Marriage Centered, Marriage and Child, Career Centered, and Family and Career. The Career Centered and Marriage Centered groups tended to differ the most, with the former being less enthusiastic toward marriage and reporting less cautious beliefs and behavior related to sexuality and risk taking. Other nuanced differences were also explored. It is argued that the centrality profiles have implications for the decisions that young adults currently make that could lead them along various trajectories toward adulthood that influence if and how adult roles are realized.


Identity salience Role centrality Transition to adulthood 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Family and Consumer SciencesBall State UniversityMuncieUSA
  2. 2.Department of Family LifeBrigham Young UniversityProvoUSA

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