Material independence and emotional independence in relation to sex, socio economic status, population density, and college student adjustment

Danesh Karunanayake, Purdue University


The main purpose of this study was to examine whether emotional and material independence and interdependence is related to sex, socio-economic status (SES) and population density (PD). The study also explored whether sex, SES and PD moderate emotional independence and college adjustment. A background information sheet was utilized to identify demographic variables, sex, SES, and PD. Multigenerational Interconnectedness Scale (Gavazzi, Sabatelli, & Reese-Weber, 1999) was used to assess material and emotional independence and interdependence. Student adaptation to College Questionnaire (Baker & Siryk, 1989) was used to measure student's adjustment to college. The results revealed that as income and mother's education level increased emotional independence decreased for participants from a community college but not for participants from a university. For all participants there was a significant positive relationship between PD and emotional independence. Finally, for low SES individuals, income moderated emotional independence and academic adjustment. The results provide some support for Kagitcibaci's (1996) general family model within the United States. Implications for college counselors and future research are discussed.




Pistole, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Social psychology

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