Self-esteem and education: Sex and cohort comparisons among high school seniors

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Abstract

Reports on the self-esteem of 3,183 male and female seniors in a nationwide sample of the high school class of 1977. Comparisons were drawn with 1,715 males from the class of 1969 thus providing a partial replication and extension of an earlier study (J. G. Bachman et al; see record 1979–26020–001) which showed that educational accomplishments underwent a reduction in centrality–became less important–for self-esteem during the late teens and early twenties. One major finding is that the self-esteem of seniors was correlated with educationally relevant measures almost equally for males in the classes of 1969 and 1977. This finding rules out a secular trend interpretation of the earlier study's results, providing further support for a developmental interpretation. A 2nd finding is that self-esteem correlated with educationally relevant measures about equally for males and females in the class of 1977, suggesting that the impact of educational factors was basically similar for the 2 sexes. A 3rd finding is that males and females were very similar in levels of self-esteem. (12 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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