Article

The Role of Social Media Emotional Experiences in Identity Construction: Exploring Links between Micro-identity Processes

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Abstract

Identity can express itself at different time scales: while a whole year can have a major impact on commitment changes, daily identity relevant events pave the way for exploration of how the commitments fit to the self through real time emotional experiences. This study aimed at understanding how micro-identity processes were linked to each other and how daily social media emotional experiences could explain levels of micro-identity processes in two primary identity domains at emerging adulthood: the romantic relationships and the educational domains. Participants were emerging adult students aged from 18 to 24 (N = 35, 85.71% women). The study followed a fifteen-week protocol containing three measurement periods each consisting of seven daily measures. We observed a large heterogeneity in the relations between emotional experiences and micro-identity processes. Specifically, within-individual relations between emotional experiences and the identity exploration processes were mainly positive in the romantic relationships domain, while such a relation was found between the emotional experiences and the commitment process in the domain of education. Linear mixed models showed that different aspects of emotional experiences predicted higher levels of identity exploration in the romantic relationships domain only. Results of this study account for specific roles of social media emotional experiences in the romantic relationships domain and in the educational domain.

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... 60) result, should not be neglected as it provides a rich resource for future research on mechanisms of identity development. Vincent and Lannegrand (2022) focused on everyday emotional experiences evoked by social media and examined how such experiences play a role in identity processes among university students. In this study, real-time identity processes are operationalized at a micro-level: Exploration refers to one's investigation of the fit between the chosen context (i.e., educational or relational) and the self, and commitment is defined as a feeling of the fit. ...
... These papers focused on different time scales. Three papers addressed short-term time scales (Kunnen, 2022;Sugimura et al., 2022;Vincent & Lannegrand, 2022). Among the other three papers, one focused on the relation between short-and medium-term (Meca et al., 2022) and one on the relation between shortand long-term time scales (Parada & Salmela-Aro, 2022;Wong et al., 2022). ...
... As for the analytic approach, two papers applied within-person analyses (Sugimura et al., 2022;Wong et al., 2022). Four papers focused on both within-and between-person processes (Kunnen, 2022;Meca et al., 2022;Parada & Salmela-Aro, 2022;Vincent & Lannegrand, 2022). These studies all showed remarkable differences between the results of group-level analyses and the intra-individual analyses, and they stressed the strong differences between individuals. ...
Thesis
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The role of social media technology has had a profound influence on modern romantic relationships in the past decade. My research critically reviews sociological literature from the field of new media studies that focus on the heightened impact of social media usage in the beginning to maintenance stages of romantic relationships. Moreover, gaps in the current literature are explored, such as limitations in the demographics and romantic relationship stages that are analyzed for data collection. For example, the paucity of published literature regarding how social media affects relationships past once users meet their partners is examined. Furthermore, this research questions the scope and focus of existing empirical case studies as well as highlights the importance of literary representation and the cruciality of diversity in this emerging field. It is important to note that whilst I focus specifically on social media (eg. Facebook), however, this does not exclude dating websites and applications (eg. Tinder) that utilize social media profiles within its algorithms. Ultimately, future research must become more invested in inclusivity, namely who and what is represented both topically and empirically, to allow for more insightful exploration into this burgeoning research area regarding the influence of social media on modern romantic relationships.
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The present study was designed to examine developmental patterns of identity status change during adolescence and young adulthood through meta-analysis. Some 124 studies appearing in PsycINFO, ERIC, Sociological Abstracts, and Dissertation Abstracts International between 1966 and 2005 provided data. All calculations were performed using the software program, Comprehensive Meta-analysis. Results from longitudinal studies showed the mean proportion of adolescents making progressive identity status changes was .36, compared with .15 who made regressive changes and .49 who remained stable. Cross-sectional studies showed the mean proportion of moratoriums rising steadily to age 19 years and declining thereafter, while the mean proportion of the identity achieved rose over late adolescence and young adulthood; foreclosure and diffusion statuses declined over the high school years, but fluctuated throughout late adolescence and young adulthood. Meta-analyses showed that large mean proportions of samples were not identity achieved by young adulthood. Possible reasons for this phenomenon are explored.
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Retrieved from Researchgate
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Emerging adulthood: The winding road from the late teens through the twenties
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Dynamic modeling and optimal control of intra individual variation: A computational paradigm for nonergodic psychological processes
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