Turning Point for a Turning Point: Advancing Emerging Adulthood Theory and Research

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67 Scopus citations


The present article reviews three key issues regarding the emerging adult life stage—the ways in which emerging adulthood represents a key turning point in the life span (and the influences that help to determine the path that a given individual will follow), differences in the experience of emerging adulthood between college students and noncollege-attending individuals, and international diversity in the existence and manifestation of emerging adulthood. Within each of these areas, extant knowledge is reviewed and areas in need of further attention are specified. In particular, the social, economic, and cultural forces that shape emerging adulthood are discussed in terms of who is most (and least) likely to experience emerging adulthood and the ways in which the stage is likely to manifest itself. Recommendations for future theorizing and research are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-317
Number of pages11
JournalEmerging Adulthood
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016


  • college students
  • emerging adulthood
  • family
  • identity
  • international diversity
  • peers
  • relationships
  • work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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