Adolescents' educational and occupational aspirations and valuation of characteristics of friends: An investigation of changes in sex-typing over three decades.

Date of Award


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Psychology, Social.




The present study investigated possible changes from 1973 to 2002 in the extent to which the occupational aspirations, educational aspirations, and valuation of characteristics of friends among adolescents are sex-typed. The data for this study were based on a survey administered to four cohorts of grade 10 students in the same three high schools in 1973, 1985, 1991, and 2002. Based on the expectation that each successive cohort of students would have been exposed to greater flexibility in gender-role norms and to a corresponding increase in the number of role models in those jobs traditionally held by members of the opposite sex, it was hypothesized that, across the four cohort years, students would show less sex typing in their occupational and educational aspirations. In addition, changes in the sex-typed characteristics that each successive cohort sample of students value in their same- and opposite-sex friends were explored. Overall, the findings indicate that there has been a decline in males' and females' sex-typed attitudes across the four cohort years. More specifically, the results show that males and females are aspiring to less sex-typed occupations and have less sex-typed educational aspirations. Furthermore, the results show that males value less sex-typed characteristics in their female friends, but continue to value sex-typed characteristics in their male friends and females value less sex-typed characteristics in both their male and female friends. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis2005 .M47. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 44-03, page: 1537. Thesis (M.A.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 2005.