Ascribed status is beyond a person’s control such as race and gender while achieved status is based on merit and qualification. For instance, children tend to have more ascribed status compared to adults because they lack a voice in most matters. However, it is important to note that a person can have multiple statuses. The concepts apply well to Maria’s situation since she has more than one job. Ascribed status is evidenced in her race, she is Mexican-American. She did not choose to be born Mexican-American and, as such, has little control over it. Achieved status can be seen in her qualifications; she is a tenured professor at a major University where she teaches three classes. Similarly, she is the president of the PTA of her children’s school.
An individual can experience role conflict if there are competing expectations between two or more roles. It also occurs when one tries to complete more than one social role at the same time. Role strain occurs when a person experiences tension resulting from a single role.
These two concepts apply well to Maria’s situation since she holds a higher status in society. Role conflict emerges clearly because she has more than one role; a mother and wife, a tenured professor at a major University, and President of the PTA. As a Mexican woman, family is important and, as such, she must allocate enough time to her husband and children. However, this might not be the case because she also has other duties to attend to such as teaching at a University. All of these roles are demanding which shows how role conflict occurs.