Developmental tasks as a framework to study personality development in adulthood and old age

Roos Hutteman*, Marie Hennecke, Ulrich Orth, Anne K. Reitz, Jule Specht

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Research consistently shows that personality development is a lifelong phenomenon, with mean-level and rank-order changes occurring in all life phases. What happens during specific life phases that can explain these developmental patterns? In the present paper, we review literature linking personality development in different phases of adulthood to developmental tasks associated with these phases. Building on previous work, we describe several categories of developmental tasks that are present in all phases of adulthood. However, the specific tasks within these categories change across adulthood from establishing new social roles in early adulthood to maintaining them in middle adulthood and preventing losses in old age. This trajectory is reflected in mean-level changes in personality, which indicates development towards greater maturity (increases in social dominance, conscientiousness, and emotional stability) in early and middle adulthood, but less so at the end of life. Importantly, developmental tasks are not only associated with mean-level changes, but the way in which people deal with these tasks is also related to rank-order changes in personality. We provide an outlook for future research on how the influence of historical time on the normativeness of developmental tasks might be reflected in personality development. Copyright (C) 2014 European Association of Personality Psychology

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-278
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Journal of Personality
Volume28
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • personality development
  • developmental tasks
  • adulthood
  • old age
  • RANK-ORDER STABILITY
  • MEAN-LEVEL CHANGE
  • YOUNG ADULTHOOD
  • LIFE-COURSE
  • SOCIAL-INVESTMENT
  • SOCIOEMOTIONAL SELECTIVITY
  • CHILDHOOD PERSONALITY
  • EMERGING ADULTHOOD
  • COPING RESOURCES
  • MIDDLE ADULTHOOD

Cite this

Hutteman, Roos ; Hennecke, Marie ; Orth, Ulrich ; Reitz, Anne K. ; Specht, Jule. / Developmental tasks as a framework to study personality development in adulthood and old age. In: European Journal of Personality. 2014 ; Vol. 28, No. 3. pp. 267-278.
@article{f4d3586f1d6a410aa00080114255d61a,
title = "Developmental tasks as a framework to study personality development in adulthood and old age",
abstract = "Research consistently shows that personality development is a lifelong phenomenon, with mean-level and rank-order changes occurring in all life phases. What happens during specific life phases that can explain these developmental patterns? In the present paper, we review literature linking personality development in different phases of adulthood to developmental tasks associated with these phases. Building on previous work, we describe several categories of developmental tasks that are present in all phases of adulthood. However, the specific tasks within these categories change across adulthood from establishing new social roles in early adulthood to maintaining them in middle adulthood and preventing losses in old age. This trajectory is reflected in mean-level changes in personality, which indicates development towards greater maturity (increases in social dominance, conscientiousness, and emotional stability) in early and middle adulthood, but less so at the end of life. Importantly, developmental tasks are not only associated with mean-level changes, but the way in which people deal with these tasks is also related to rank-order changes in personality. We provide an outlook for future research on how the influence of historical time on the normativeness of developmental tasks might be reflected in personality development. Copyright (C) 2014 European Association of Personality Psychology",
keywords = "personality development, developmental tasks, adulthood, old age, RANK-ORDER STABILITY, MEAN-LEVEL CHANGE, YOUNG ADULTHOOD, LIFE-COURSE, SOCIAL-INVESTMENT, SOCIOEMOTIONAL SELECTIVITY, CHILDHOOD PERSONALITY, EMERGING ADULTHOOD, COPING RESOURCES, MIDDLE ADULTHOOD",
author = "Roos Hutteman and Marie Hennecke and Ulrich Orth and Reitz, {Anne K.} and Jule Specht",
year = "2014",
doi = "10.1002/per.1959",
language = "English",
volume = "28",
pages = "267--278",
journal = "European Journal of Personality",
issn = "0890-2070",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "3",

}

Developmental tasks as a framework to study personality development in adulthood and old age. / Hutteman, Roos; Hennecke, Marie; Orth, Ulrich; Reitz, Anne K.; Specht, Jule.

In: European Journal of Personality, Vol. 28, No. 3, 2014, p. 267-278.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Developmental tasks as a framework to study personality development in adulthood and old age

AU - Hutteman, Roos

AU - Hennecke, Marie

AU - Orth, Ulrich

AU - Reitz, Anne K.

AU - Specht, Jule

PY - 2014

Y1 - 2014

N2 - Research consistently shows that personality development is a lifelong phenomenon, with mean-level and rank-order changes occurring in all life phases. What happens during specific life phases that can explain these developmental patterns? In the present paper, we review literature linking personality development in different phases of adulthood to developmental tasks associated with these phases. Building on previous work, we describe several categories of developmental tasks that are present in all phases of adulthood. However, the specific tasks within these categories change across adulthood from establishing new social roles in early adulthood to maintaining them in middle adulthood and preventing losses in old age. This trajectory is reflected in mean-level changes in personality, which indicates development towards greater maturity (increases in social dominance, conscientiousness, and emotional stability) in early and middle adulthood, but less so at the end of life. Importantly, developmental tasks are not only associated with mean-level changes, but the way in which people deal with these tasks is also related to rank-order changes in personality. We provide an outlook for future research on how the influence of historical time on the normativeness of developmental tasks might be reflected in personality development. Copyright (C) 2014 European Association of Personality Psychology

AB - Research consistently shows that personality development is a lifelong phenomenon, with mean-level and rank-order changes occurring in all life phases. What happens during specific life phases that can explain these developmental patterns? In the present paper, we review literature linking personality development in different phases of adulthood to developmental tasks associated with these phases. Building on previous work, we describe several categories of developmental tasks that are present in all phases of adulthood. However, the specific tasks within these categories change across adulthood from establishing new social roles in early adulthood to maintaining them in middle adulthood and preventing losses in old age. This trajectory is reflected in mean-level changes in personality, which indicates development towards greater maturity (increases in social dominance, conscientiousness, and emotional stability) in early and middle adulthood, but less so at the end of life. Importantly, developmental tasks are not only associated with mean-level changes, but the way in which people deal with these tasks is also related to rank-order changes in personality. We provide an outlook for future research on how the influence of historical time on the normativeness of developmental tasks might be reflected in personality development. Copyright (C) 2014 European Association of Personality Psychology

KW - personality development

KW - developmental tasks

KW - adulthood

KW - old age

KW - RANK-ORDER STABILITY

KW - MEAN-LEVEL CHANGE

KW - YOUNG ADULTHOOD

KW - LIFE-COURSE

KW - SOCIAL-INVESTMENT

KW - SOCIOEMOTIONAL SELECTIVITY

KW - CHILDHOOD PERSONALITY

KW - EMERGING ADULTHOOD

KW - COPING RESOURCES

KW - MIDDLE ADULTHOOD

U2 - 10.1002/per.1959

DO - 10.1002/per.1959

M3 - Article

VL - 28

SP - 267

EP - 278

JO - European Journal of Personality

JF - European Journal of Personality

SN - 0890-2070

IS - 3

ER -