Time use as cause and consequence of youth development

Chun Bun Lam, Susan M. Mchale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


From an ecological perspective, daily activities are both causes and consequences of youth development. As causes, daily activities represent distinct sets of socialization experiences that afford opportunities to acquire new competencies and behavioral patterns. As consequences, daily activities reflect youth's force and resource characteristics, including developmental status, temperament and motivation, and pre-existing levels of adjustment. An ecological perspective also highlights the role of the larger sociocultural context in shaping and conditioning the links between daily activities and youth development. In this article, we draw on research with children and adolescents to consider how an ecological perspective can provide a flexible framework for studying time use as a developmental phenomenon. We also discuss methodological issues and suggest research that should be conducted in this broad area.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-25
Number of pages6
JournalChild Development Perspectives
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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