Growth patterns of future orientation among maltreated youth: A prospective examination of the emergence of resilience.

  • Assaf Oshri, Erinn B. Duprey, Steven M. Kogan, Matthew W. Carlson, Sihong Liu
  • Developmental Psychology, August 2018, American Psychological Association (APA)
  • DOI: 10.1037/dev0000528

Future orientation is critical for youth resilience

What is it about?

ring adolescence, a positive outlook toward the future (i.e., future orientation) can protect youth from the risks conferred by childhood adversity. Research to date, however, has largely considered future orientation as a static attribute. Developmental systems perspectives suggest that future orientation, when considered across time, will exhibit dynamic trajectories with levels changing in response to the varying balance of risks and resources in youths’ environments. Investigating the developmental course and consequences of future orientation is particularly germane to maltreated youth who may benefit from programs that target this protective mechanism. The present study tested hypotheses regarding the developmental course of future orientation, including the association of distinct future orientation trajectories with time-varying risk factors and resources, and the association of continuity and change in future orientation trajectories with young adult psychosocial functioning. Hypotheses were investigated with longitudinal (T1 Mage 12.22, T2 Mage 13.52, T3 Mage 14.79, T4 Mage 18.54), multireporter data from a nationally representative sample of maltreated youth (N 1,461). Growth mixture modeling (GMM) identified three classes of growth trajectories in future orientation: high-persistent, low start/ increasing, and high start/decreasing. Time-variant and -invariant risk factors and resources differenti- ated youths’ future orientation trajectories. Youth in the high-persistent and low start/increasing trajec- tories were more likely to attain young adulthood developmental milestones—including independent living skills, social capital, employment, and higher weekly income. This study documents how an important component of resilient adaptation emerges and promotes positive outcomes among highly vulnerable you

Why is it important?

The study shows how the development of future orientation is instrumental for adolescents to cope with trauma

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The following have contributed to this page: Dr Assaf Oshri