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Struggling for independence? Health practices of young adults living in the parental home.

School of Health Sciences

About the Project

Within a number of industrialised, and post- industrialised nations such as the UK, there are strong cultural narratives that associate autonomous adulthood with independent living, away from the parental home. Nevertheless, the number of young adults living in the parental home is increasing, as is the duration of their co-residence: contemporary social conditions, economic barriers in particular, are often argued to underpin this trend. Half of 20-24 year olds in England lived with their parents in 2015, the highest proportion since 1996. A fifth of 25-29 year olds were also still living at home in 2015. This general trend towards increasing co-residence masks diverse patterns of leaving and return, including delayed home leaving as well as the so called ‘boomerang’ generation who leave the parental home, often to purse higher education, and subsequently return.

These residency trends have been argued to reflect and contribute to the lengthened transition to adulthood of many contemporary young people. Yet, while concerns have been expressed about the capacity of young people living in the parental home to achieve adult independence, the implications for young adults’ health practices remain largely unexplored.

Taking an intergenerational and qualitative approach, this project will engage with young adults’ and parents’ experiences of adult children’s ongoing residence in the family home. Research will explore adult-child/parental relationships and their impact upon, and implications for, young adults’ health understandings, behaviours and autonomy.

We particularly welcome applications from graduates with a strong grounding in social sciences.

Questions about the project can be directed to Professor Penny Curtis or Dr Victoria Whitaker .

Funding Notes

This project is open to self-funded students only.

Interested candidates should in the first instance contact Professor Penny Curtis,

How to apply:
Please complete a University Postgraduate Research Application form available here: View Website

Please clearly state the prospective main supervisor in the respective box and select “School of Nursing and Midwifery” as the department.

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