Abstract

The present study examined sense of identity (assessed using the Identity subscale of the Psychosocial Maturity Inventory) as a moderator of associations between stressful life events, behavioral/emotional problems, and substance abuse in a sample of 187 college undergraduates (67% female). Correlations showed evidence for positive associations between life stress and behavioral and emotional problems, negative associations between identity and life stress/behavioral and emotional problems, and a positive association between identity and GPA. For three outcomes—anxious/depressed problems, thought problems, and aggressive behavior—identity moderated the association, such that individuals with a stronger sense of identity reported fewer problems even when experiencing high levels of life stress. Primary results remained significant when controlling for age, global self-worth, and broad personality variables, and did not differ by gender.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1543-3382
Print ISSN
0897-5264
Pages
pp. 368-384
Launched on MUSE
2014-06-27
Open Access
No
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