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Emerging Adults Lab

researchersFaculty Advisor:  Dr. Cynthia Neal Kimball

Meaning-making in emerging adults’ narratives: The role of identity, attachment, and religious worldview

One of the salient features of a mature life story is the integration of one’s experiences, particularly the stress and challenges of transitional experiences, into a coherent and reasoned conception of the self. “Human beings are storytellers,” and our stories endow us with a means to make sense of our experiences, bring clarity to our perceptions, and provide meaning to our life situations; they provide “evidence of a hard-won battle to make meaning of life circumstances.” Those who actively create a coherent story, expressing meaningful insights and integration of life’s challenges, experience a sense of well-being, personal growth and ego development.

Those who participate in this research team will explore the meaning-making stories of emerging adults in light of their identity status, attachments, and religious worldviews. Specifically, as a member of the team you can expect to:

  • Read the existing psychological literature on the emerging adult population (18-25 year olds)
  • Discuss, debate, mull over the challenges and dilemmas for this particular developmental period.
  • Discover the nature and nuances of qualitative research (what do you do when the T-test isn’t the most important/significant measuring tool??)
  • Learn how to code using the qualitative research software, NVivo 9

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