Social Media, Homelessness, & Adulthood: Three Concepts and How They Fit Together

America’s Youth: Transitions to Adulthood

Aud, Susan, Angelina KewalRamani, and Lauren Frohlich. America’s Youth: Transitions to Adulthood. U.S. Dept. of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Government Printing Office, 2011, Washington, DC.

This statistical “fact book” on American youth focuses on different aspects of teenage life and how these aspects have changed over the years. I’m particularly interested in using information contained within the first three chapters on how the demographic of youth has changed in America, how education has changed—particularly the growing enrollment in college immediately after high school—and the employment of teenagers who drop out of high school.  I hope to use this information to help build a case on why the dated definition of being settled down and married with kids is neither accurate nor relevant to what young people and emerging adults are doing today.

This book is published by the U.S. Government and is fairly recent. To further bolster its credibility, the book is comprised of almost exclusively studies and data, with an extensive source list in Appendix A on each of the studies and how each was conducted. Since the information presented here is just facts, I hope to use it to substantiate my characterization of emerging adults and verify the analysis of my other sources.

Generation Y Students in Social Media: What Do We Know about Them?

Popescul, Daniela and Mircea Georgescu. “Generation Y Students in Social Media: What Do We Know about Them?” BRAIN: Broad Research in Artificial Intelligence & Neuroscience, vol. 6, issue ¾, EduSoft Publishing, Dec. 2015. EBSCOhost,

This text is about the use of social media by millennials and its positive and negative consequences. The authors present a careful analysis of several studies and shows how heavily our generation engages with social media (one study suggested as much as 5 hours/day!).

This source will go to substantiate how important social media and social media culture are to growing up today. My hope is to examine Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat and other sources to find first-hand perspective on what it is like to grow up. By scrutinizing these sources, I hope to find out more about how kids view themselves. Overall, the article concludes that there are both advantages and disadvantages to social media use and that it’s clearly an important part of growing up and fitting in.

The authors of this peer-reviewed piece are faculty members of economics and business administration at the University of Iasi in Romania. Throughout the piece, they cite credible studies and include an extensive list of references at the end.

Growing up before their time: The early adultification experiences of homeless young people

Schmitz, Rachel M and Kimberly A. Tyler. “Growing up before their time: The early adultification experiences of homeless young people.”  Children and Youth Services Review, Duncan Lindsey, vol. 64, Elsevier Science, May 2016. ScienceDirect,

This text is primarily about how homeless kids are forced into “early adultification,” why this happens, and what implications it has on them. The authors of the article studied and interviewed various different people and focused on the following topics: premature caregiving (when young adults have to take care of siblings), early independence (such as being left alone for several days at a time), and parenthood. I think for the purposes of my paper, the second focus is the most relevant.

The source is peer-reviewed, published in the Children and Youth Services Review, and has a long list of reference sources. The article also clearly outlines the research model for collecting and analyzing data, and although the interview sample size was relatively small (40 people), the paper outlines that the group was fairly diverse.

I think this source will go well with my research into how and when we become adults. What I’m planning to use as my main sources include information from and on the use of social media to demonstrate how “growing up” has slowly changed over the years. I think this source paints a very strong picture of what elements make someone really “grow up” since these young adults have clearly grown up very quickly and a lot earlier than they should have.

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1 Response to Social Media, Homelessness, & Adulthood: Three Concepts and How They Fit Together

  1. Kathryn Popp says:

    All of your sources seem completely credible in that they come from highly reputable websites and databases, but I am particularly interested in the way that you are going to connect all three of these sources. All of them propose interesting and valid facts, but there is no pattern or correlation between the sources, especially the source about homeless young people. If your essay is focusing on young people in general and how their culture is completely different from the culture of teenagers a few generations ago, you could create an incredible argument; however, your goal of the assignment is to create a definition for “adult”, “Millennials”, or “coming of age”, and you have great sources for each one, but you need to just focus on one of the topics, not all three.
    I really enjoyed the last article about homeless kids and how they have to “adult” quicker than others. Maybe this article could be the basis of your definition of an “adult” with support from the first article on how kids typically make the transition into adulthood? The second source just does not belong with the rest if you are trying to focus on one topic.

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