Date of Award

1-1-2013

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Eugene S Huebner

Abstract

This study compared the utility of a global versus a domain-specific measure of life satisfaction in predicting behavioral and achievement outcome variables among a sample of adolescents in the context of school. The sample included 694 middle school students (7th and 8th grade) from a suburban school district located in the Southeastern United States who completed self-report measures of life satisfaction, engagement, behavior, and grades. Actual grade point average (GPA) and standardized MAP test scores were reported by the school. Based on previous research and the guiding principal, specificity matching, this study hypothesized that a measure of school satisfaction would be a stronger predictor of academic performance and school-related behavior than a measure of global life satisfaction. Results indicated that a global measure of life satisfaction may be better for predicting certain school-related outcomes while a more contextualized approach (i.e., a measure of school satisfaction) to measurement may be better for predicting others. Still, both measures may be relatively comparable predictors for other school-related outcomes. Implications of these findings are discussed.

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Psychology Commons

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