Holstein 2000 take their point of departure from accounts of experience through time. As with other biological organisms, reproduction is a key feature of human maturation, ensuring the persistence of the species , p. Aging and cognition—Research methodologies and empirical advances. It is motivated to respond to the need for synthesis and integration. Quantitative approaches: Longitudinal methods in the study of human development and aging. Handbook of the life course. Crawford and Walker, 2003 There are various different perspectives on how to approach the life course and each has a different emphasis.
Sociologists have adopted in their place the more sophisticated and flexible life course perspective. Parallel to this idea is the concept of control cycles whereby families and individuals modify their expectations and behavior in response to changes in either needs or resources. Concepts of the life cycle: Their history, meanings, and uses in the social sciences. From this perspective, development is embedded in multiple contexts and is conceived of as a dynamic process in which the ontogeny of development interacts with the social environment, a set of interconnected social settings, embedded in a multilayered social and cultural context. It is also considered a particularly impressionable period for the formation of beliefs and orientations upon which historical events are thought to have a strong impact ;. That biological development follows such an ontological course that interacts with environments seems incontrovertible. In biologically oriented discussions of development; thus, individual members of a given species follow a particular sequence of states or stages that result from natural processes of growth, differentiation, and maturation.
Changes or conflict in any one layer will ripple throughout other layers. Life course theory also has moved in a constructionist direction. The collected papers of Franco Modigliani, Volume 2: The life cycle hypothesis of saving. However people have different perceptions of how these transitions affect them, what may be challenging for one individual may not be for another. As a result, macro-level events, such as war, could affect individual behaviors e. A cohort is a group of people born during a particular timeframe who've experienced similar historical events and changes in the culture around them.
At this time, researchers from diverse disciplines e. A biodemographic interpretation of life span. Longitudinal studies of problem behavior have also revealed important insights into the genetic underpinnings of adolescent behavior. Pubertal timing is not only associated with the formation of romantic and sexual relationships in adolescence. There are a number of misconceptions about the concept of life cycle, owing in part to the ways in which the concept has been applied to social organizations, such as families, firms, and even entire societies see.
Several studies have tracked behavioral problems from childhood into adolescence, illuminating developmental continuities and discontinuities and contextualizing adolescent problem behavior. Moreover, for those who do not pursue higher education or start, but do not complete, their degrees, the U. Thus, understanding adolescence requires linking adolescence to other life stages within the individual as well as across individuals. As the historical record shows, the social, economic, and cultural aspects of adolescence have varied substantially across successive birth cohorts over the past 30 years in the United States. Such arguments, although highly convincing when applied to societies, organizations, firms, etc. Finally, a variety of quantitative and qualitative methodologies have been used in life course analyses.
Journal of Marriage and the Family. Although both children may live in two-parent families, have the same family incomes, and receive the same quality of education, their social environments create different realities that force them to structure their lives in different ways. The Journals of Gerontology, Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. This theory looks at a child's development within the context of the system of influences that form their environment. A life-span developmental perspective on social status and health. Thus the concept of life course implies age-differentiated social phenomena distinct from uniform life-cycle stages and the life span. Life span refers to duration of life and characteristics that are closely related to age but that vary little across time and place.
At the same time, there is considerable confusion regarding the differences because the two words are often used interchangeably. In particular, it directs attention to the powerful connection between individual lives and the historical and socioeconomic context in which these lives unfold. New York: Macmillan Reference; 2000. . Finally, another hallmark of this perspective is that early life course decisions, opportunities, and conditions affect later outcomes.
The changing adolescent experience: Societal trends and the transition to adulthood. The approach takes into account how we grow and change as we go through life experiences. New York: Russell Sage; 1972. People born between 1946 and 1964, for example, are often referred to as the baby boom generation. Success by ten: Intervention early, often, and effectively in the education of young children. Each phase of the life span has a set of potential life course patterns, that is, differences in social pathways for negotiating a particular life stage and transitions between life stages.
A final theme, the importance of historical change, is woven throughout our discussion. Trends in the verified age of the oldest living person in a population subgroup over time have been the subject of considerable study e. Aging and developmental change, therefore, are continuous processes that are experienced throughout life. First, as you pass through a stage, it affects your behavior and orientations. Handbook of aging and the social sciences.
These models seem too deterministic and leave little or no room for deviation. Life science: Any science that deals with living organisms, their life processes, and their interrelationships, as biology, medicine, or ecology. Indeed, an understanding of the location of various cohorts in their respective historical contexts aids scholars and policy makers to identity circumstances that have differentially affected people's respective life histories. In the words of , p. In demography, it is the measurement of individual life spans that permits the calculation of mortality rates and associated statistics. Life histories are transactional products of the dialectics among the multiple determinants of development and the motivated, selectively responding person.