Exploring dual gender typicality among young adults in the United States

Naomi C.Z. Andrews, Carol Martin, Rachel E. Cook, Ryan D. Field, Dawn E. England

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The goal of the current study was to better understand the development of gender typicality in young adulthood by applying the dual-identity approach to gender typicality, previously developed with children, to a university sample. Participants (n = 215, Mage = 20.20 years; 62% female) were asked to rate their perceived similarity to both own- and other-gender peers. They also completed questionnaires assessing sexist attitudes, internalized sexualization (females), adherence to male-typed behaviors in the context of interpersonal relationships (males; adherence to physical toughness and restrictive emotional expressivity), gender-based relationship efficacy, friendships, self-esteem, social self-efficacy, and social anxiety. Results indicated that self-perceived gender typicality involves comparisons to both gender groups, and that meaningful typologies can be created based on similarity to own- and other-gender groups. As with children, results indicated that identifying with one’s own gender was advantageous in terms of low social anxiety and relationships with own-gender peers. For adults who identified with both own- and other-gender peers, we identified additional social benefits (i.e., efficacy and friendships with other-gender peers). Further, we identified a downside to own-gender typicality: individuals who identified only with their own gender had more sexist attitudes than those who identified with the other gender. Findings support the viability of the dual-identity approach in young adults, and have implications for researchers assessing gender typicality across development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-321
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Development
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2019


  • Gender typicality
  • gender typicality
  • social adjustment
  • young adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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