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Studies

Cantril (1965): study US 1959

Publication

Author(s):
Cantril, H.
Title:
The Pattern of Human Concern.
Source:
Rutgers University Press, 1965, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

Investigation

Public:
21+ aged, general public, USA, 1959
Sample:
Respondents:
N = 1549
Non Response:
-
Assessment:
Interview: face-to-face
Structured interview

Happiness Measure(s) and Distributional Findings

Full text:
Selfreport on single question:

Here is a picture of a ladder. Suppose we say that the top of the ladder represents the best possible life for you and the  bottom represents the worst possible life for you. Where on the ladder do you feel you personally stand at the present time?   
[  10  ]  best possible life
[    9  ]
[    8  ]
[    7  ]
[    6  ]
[    5  ]
[    4  ]
[    3  ]
[    2  ]
[    1  ]
[    0  ]  worst possible life
                          
                                                                                
Preceded by 1)  open questions about what the respondent imagines as the best possible life and the worst possible life. 2) ratings on the ladder of one's life five years ago and  where on the ladder one expects to stand five years from now.

Name: Cantril's self anchoring ladder rating of life (original)
Classification:
C-BW-c-sq-l-11-a
Author's label:
Happiness
Page in publication:
40, 353
Observed distribution
Frequencies
1: 1.13%,   2: 0.56%,   3: 1.78%,   4: 3.94%,   5: 6.2%,   6: 24.79%,   7: 10.7%,   8: 14.08%,   9: 15.21%,   10: 6.76%,   11: 14.08%   (total 99.23%)
Summary Statistics
On original range 0 - 10 On range 0-10
Mean:
6.56 6.56
SD:
2.24 2.24
Full text:
Selfreport on single question :

"Some people seem to be quite happy and satisfied with their lives, while others seem quite unhappy and dissatisfied. Now look at this ladder (again). Suppose that a person who is entirely satisfied with his life would be at the top of the ladder and a person who is extremely dissatisfied with his life would be at the bottom of the ladder. Where would you put yourself on the ladder at the present stage of your life in terms of how satisfied or dissatisfied you are with your personal life?"
[ 10 ]  entirely satisfied
[   9 ]
[   8 ]
[   7 ]
[   6 ]
[   5 ]
[   4 ]
[   3 ]
[   2 ]
[   1 ]
[   0 ]  entirely dissatisfied

Name Cantril ladder rating (modified version)
Classification:
O-SLP-c-sq-l-11-a
Author's label:
Satisfaction with life
Observed distribution
Frequencies
1: 0%,   2: 0%,   3: 0%,   4: 0%,   5: 0%,   6: 0%,   7: 0%,   8: 0%,   9: 0%,   10: 0%,   11: 0%
Summary Statistics
On original range 0 - 10 On range 0-10
Mean:
7.64
SD:
2.05
Full text:
Selfreport on single question:

How would you rate yourself as to how successful or unsuccessful you have been in terms of achieving your own goals and aims in life? Think of the top of the ladder as being completely successful, the bottom being entirely unsuccessful
[ 10 ]    completely successful
[   9 ]
[   8 ]
[   7 ]
[   6 ]
[   5 ]
[   4 ]
[   3 ]
[   2 ]
[   1 ]     
[   0 ]   entirely unsuccessful
Classification:
C-RG-h-sq-l-11-a
Author's label:
Success in achieving goals
Observed distribution
Frequencies
1: 0%,   2: 0%,   3: 0%,   4: 0%,   5: 0%,   6: 0%,   7: 0%,   8: 0%,   9: 0%,   10: 0%,   11: 0%
Summary Statistics
On original range 0 - 10 On range 0-10
Mean:
6.74
SD:
2.18

Correlational Findings

Author's label Subject Description Finding Age Current age (in years) Educational level Level of school-education White race Ethnic status in the USA Extent of opportunity to do what one likes Amount of restrictions perceived Male sex Sex (male vs female) Satisfaction with life O-SL by C-BW Success in achieving goals C-BW by C-RW
O-SL by C-RW
Socio-economic level Current socio-economic status Enjoyment of previous day Mood during the interview Urban dwelling Rural vs urban dwelling Positive evaluation of present national situation Evaluation of current situation of nation Ability to do things oneself to increase satisfaction Inner locus of control Feeling that life is full of troubles and obstacles Easy (vs hard) Worries and fears Amount of worrying Importance of religion in one's life Concern about religion Religion Current religious denomination Respect for oneself Self respect Confidence in one-self Self confidence Class 'Objective' socio-economic status Occupation Current occupation