Self-Socialization: Definition & Explanation

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  • 0:01 Definition of…
  • 2:07 Self-Socialization:…
  • 2:45 Influence on Development
  • 3:24 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yolanda Williams

Yolanda has taught college Psychology and Ethics, and has a doctorate of philosophy in counselor education and supervision.

Self-socialization is defined as the process whereby we actively influence our own social development and outcomes. Learn more about self-socialization from examples and test your knowledge with a quiz.

Definition of Self-Socialization

Mickey is a 13-year-old male who wants to become a professional football player. Mickey spends time working out and following his older brother around, who's a quarterback for his high school football team. Mickey attentively watches all of his brother's football games. However, Mickey complains when his mother makes him attend his sister's ballet recitals and usually falls asleep halfway into each recital.

Mickey loves to tag along to his brother's practices and watch him from the bleachers so that Mickey can learn the football plays. Mickey practices football whenever he can and tries to imitate his brother's football maneuvers. Mickey refuses to participate in any sports unless they can help improve his football game. Mickey goes to football camp every summer and is the quarterback for his junior high school. All of Mickey's close friends are football players.

Mickey continues to practice and play for his school's football all through high school and college. During his senior year in undergrad, Mickey is recruited to play football for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Mickey's football career has been cultivated through the process of self-socialization. Self-socialization can be defined as the process by which we influence our own social development outcomes. We self-socialize through:

  • Selective attention, which is when we consciously choose to focus on certain things or messages in our environment while ignoring others.
  • We also self-socialize through imitation, which is when we choose to copy the actions of others.
  • Participation in particular activities is another self-socialization technique. We choose to participate in certain activities that will likely result in outcomes that we view as favorable.

In our example, Mickey chose to participate in activities that would make him a better football player. He paid attention to his brother's behaviors and football practices while falling asleep during his sister's recitals, exhibiting selective attention. Mickey copied his brother's football maneuvers and the football plays that he learned by watching his brother's practices, exhibiting imitation. Mickey also participated in football camp and joined his junior high football team, participating in particular activities.

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