The Lengthening Transition to Adulthood: Financial Parenting and Recentering during the College-to-Career Transition


Using longitudinal data collected from a college cohort in the United States (N = 922), we examined the associations between systemic and structural factors (gender, race/ethnicity, family SES, and first-generation college status), financial parenting (teaching, and modeling behavior), and emerging adults' financial behavior. We conducted a series of one-way repeated measure ANOVA analyses (GLM) to assess patterns of average change in financial parenting and financial behavior in the first year in college, fourth year in college, and two years after college and found evidence suggestive of recentering-a gradual transfer of responsibility during emerging adulthood from parent-directed behavior to self-directed behavior; however, the decline in financial parenting was not offset by an improvement in emerging adults' financial behavior. Despite similar patterns of change, family socioeconomic status (SES), first-generation college student status, and gender influenced both financial parenting and financial behaviors at each time point. We discuss the findings and the implications on the timing and length of the recentering process.This item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at

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