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Department of Sociology Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick
Professor of Sociology and Department Chair

Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1999


Life Course, Adolescence and the Transition to Adulthood, Adolescent and Young Adult Health and Well-Being, Education, Work and Family

Research Interests

My research interests are in the areas of work, family, and education across the life course, with particular focus on well-being and achievement in adolescence and the transition to adulthood.  I am currently involved in research tackling families’ and young people’s adaptations to the changing nature of the transition to adulthood, including familial financial support in young adulthood and its implications for attainment and well-being; change in educational and work ambitions tied to changing personal and historical circumstances; and the interplay of stratification and the development of social psychological resources in promoting well-being and attainment.


(509) 335-8773

Wilson-Short Hall 204D

Curriculum Vitae

Selected Publications

Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick, Jeremy Staff, Megan E. Patrick and John E. Schulenberg.  Forthcoming.  “Adolescent Adaptation Before, During, and in the Aftermath of the Great Recession in the United States.”  International Journal of Psychology.

Shanahan, Michael J., Jeylan T. Mortimer, and Monica Kirkpatrick Johnson (Eds).  2016.  Handbook of the Life Course, Volume 2.  Springer.

Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick, Jeremy Staff, John E. Schulenberg, and Megan E. Patrick.  2016.  “Living Healthier and Longer: A Life Course Perspective on Education and Health.”  Pp. 369-388 in Handbook of the Life Course, edited by Shanahan, Mortimer, and Johnson.  Springer.

Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick, and Jeylan T. Mortimer.  2015.  “Parents’ Work and Financial Conditions in the Great Recession and Adolescents’ Work Values.”  Journal of Vocational Behavior 87:89-100.

Hitlin, Steven and Monica Kirkpatrick Johnson.  2015.  “Reconceptualizing Agency within the Life Course: The Power of Looking Ahead.”  American Journal of Sociology 120:1429-1472.

Staff, Jeremy, Monica Kirkpatrick Johnson, Megan E. Patrick, and John Schulenberg.  2014.  “The Great Recession and Recent Employment Trends among Secondary Students in the United States.”  Longitudinal and Life Course Studies 5(2):173-188.

Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick.  2013.  “Parental Financial Assistance and Young Adults’ Relationships with Parents and Well-Being.” Journal of Marriage and Family 75:713-733.

Johnson, Monica Kirkpatrick, and John Reynolds.  2013.  “Educational Expectation Trajectories and Attainment in the Transition to Adulthood.” Social Science Research 42:818-835.