July Update: From Literature Review to Introduction

My literature search is gradually becoming the introduction to my honors thesis as I begin to piece together the many articles I have been reading over the summer. I have decided to find a natural mentor as “an unrelated (non family member) adult who has an ongoing and positive impact on the life of a protege” (Miranda-Chan et. al., 2016). Both the adolescent and the natural mentor are already in each other’s social networks. Therefore, the chances that the relationship will continue over time are better, and the likelihood of positive outcomes increases.

I have also read several studies that have assessed adolescent perceptions of adult identity specifically for disadvantaged populations. These studies defined young adults who exhibited a low level of age identity and psychosocial maturation as “late adults” whereas those who ranked high on each domain were labeled “early adults” (Berzin and Elder, 2011). Research indicates that late adults have lower self-esteem and adult-like responsibilities. In addition, late adults less likely to take on household responsibility and engage in sexual intercourse than other types (Benson et. al., 2009). Despite the current research, there are still some holes in the literature that my study will address following the statistical testing.

In addition to my introduction, I have also completed the IRB certification process. Although I did not have to submit an IRB or recruit participants because I am using data that has already been collected, it is important that I still understand the guidelines of conducting ethical research.

Moving forward, I am hoping to uncover a few more articles focused on the effect of mentorship on women. This is something that has recently peaked my interest especially after being involved in a formal mentor program over the summer. Although I gained many skills from my formal mentor, I connected more with the natural mentors I met along the way. One natural mentor in particular has really helped me with some of the career decisions I have been facing going into my senior year. It is really cool being able to live the research I am currently conducting!



  1. rsplummer says:

    Hi Mary,
    After reading your blog posts, I think your project sounds super Interesting! I’m looking forward to seeing what results you find. I can completely relate to the process of conducting a literature review and writing up your findings, as I have been doing this for my thesis as well. Although it is time consuming and a lot of work, I have found the literature review to be very helpful, especially in shaping my hypotheses and even the design of my study and the specific questions I ask in my study. What has been the most challenging thing about this process, and what has been the most rewarding?

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