Search measures of happiness
This Item Bank lists measures of happiness, mostly single direct questions. These measures are classified by conceptual focus, timeframe, mode of observation and rating scale. The Item bank provides to the studies that used these measures.
On this site, the Item Bank can be searched in the following ways:
Search on technical attributes of happiness measures
Click on 'search items by attribute'. You will then get to a page named 'search items' on which you can search in the following ways:
Search on conceptual focus of happiness measures
Happiness is defined as the subjective appreciation of one's life-as-a-whole. That concept is measured in slightly different ways and these differenences in measurement may limit the comparability of findings yielded with these measures. Therefore the variants are well distinguished using a detailed classification by 'focus'.
Three variants of happiness are distinguished: 1) overall happiness, 2) hedonic level of affect and 3) contentment. See intro text on scope of this database. The measures of happiness in this collection are sorted accordingly. Next to these three variants it also involves a category of 'mixed' measures, that address more than one of these variants at the same time.
Next there are also differences in the leading terms used in questions about happiness. E.g. in survey questions the concept of overall happiness is variably denoted with terms such as: 'life-satisfaction' and 'overall quality of life' and the position of one's life on the range between 'best and worst possible life'. Measures of happiness are also classified on leading terms.
The resulting two-layered classification can be searched on this site in two ways in the screen search items on attribute.
- Using focus classification
On the top of the screen you see the main four-fold classification of happiness variants. Within each of these you can see the commonly used lead words. Each focus variant is indicated with a code , e.g. O-HL for questions on 'Overall happiness' using 'Happiness with your Life' as leading terms. Next to each focus category you see the number of happiness measures of this kind. When you click the category code, short descriptions of all these measures appear in the field on the right of your screen. Wehn you click the full item code, a window pops up with the full text of this item and links to the studies in which it has been used.
- Using the focus window
You can also browse the focus classification
using the option for searching on multiple attributes in the search screen. The focus window presents the same categories as the classification above.
- Search on time-frame of measures
Measures of happiness differ also in the period addressed. Some questions refer to happiness 'right now', some to happiness during 'the last year' and some to happiness 'in general'. These differences must also be acknowledged for meaningful comparisons and therefore these variations are also meticulously coded.
On this site you can browse this classification in the 'time frame' window on the search page. If the other windows are on ***All***, you get all the measures that refer to a particular time-frame, e.g. all measures that adress happiness 'in general' (code 'g'). You can also restrict the search by specifying a particular focus category (window above) or observation method (window below)
- Search on mode of observation
Measures of happiness differ also in method of observation. The great majority uses single questions, but there are also measures using multiple questions or observation of cheerfull appearance by others. Again meaningful comparison of findings requires that such differences in measurement are acknwledged and hence also these variations are meticulously coded.
On this site you can browse this classification in the 'observation' window on the search page. If the other windows are on ***All***, you get all the measures that refer to a particular way of assesment, e.g. all measures that use rating by a clinician (code 'rc). You can also restrict the search by specifying a particular focus category (top window) or rating scale (window below).
- Search on rating scale used
Measures of happiness differ also in the scales used for recording differences. Some use scales with verbal response options, such as 'very happy' or 'pretty happy', some use numerical scales and some use open line scales. These differences must also be taken into account when comparing findings yielded with these measures, in particular when observed scores are transformed to a common scale. Therefore these variations in rating scales are also classified.
On this site you can browse this classification in the 'rating scale' window on the search page. If the other windows are on ***All***, you get all the measures that refer to a particular rating scale, e.g. all measures that rate happiness on a numerical scale (code 'n'). You can also restrict the search by specifying a particular focus category (top window above) or time frame (second window)
- Select on number of response options
Among these you can next select the items that use a scale of a particular lengths, e.g. the ones that express happiness in a number between 1 and 10. The number of response options appears i
on publics in which these measures have been used
On this site you can also see what measures have been used in earlier studies among particular publics. If, for example, you plan a study on the happiness of mentally handicapped persons, you can click the category 'Retarded' (under Intelligence) and a list of studies among retarded people appears on which you can see what measures of happiness have been used.
Search in Access database
This website is fed by a database in Ms-Acces, which is available on request (order). In this source you can further search on:
- words used in questions or instructions
- text of questions in other languages than English
- procedures and weights used for transforming scores to numerical scale 0-10
Go to the Item Bank