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Studies

Wessman (1956): study US 1946

Publication

Author(s):
Wessman, A.E.
Title:
A Psychological Inquiry into Satisfaction and Happiness.
Source:
Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, Princeton University, 1956, USA

Investigation

Public:
21+ aged, general public, USA, 1946
Survey name:
Gallup poll
Sample:
Non-probability purposive-quota sample
Respondents:
N = 2377
Non Response:
-
Assessment:
Interview: face-to-face
Structured interview

Happiness Measure(s) and Distributional Findings

Full text:
Selfreport on single question:

In general, how happy would you say you are..?
4  very happy
3  fairly happy
2  not very happy
1  not at all happy
-   NA/DK
Classification:
O-HL-g-sq-v-4-b
Author's label:
Avowed happiness
Remarks:
4- step scale reduced to 3 by combining response options 1 and 2. On this reduced 3-step scale:  M = 2.31, Sd = 0.63
Page in publication:
170
Observed distribution
Frequencies
1: 1%,   2: 7%,   3: 45%,   4: 46%   (total 99%)
Summary Statistics
On original range 1 - 4 On range 0-10
Mean:
3.37 7.55
SD:
0.66 1.85

Correlational Findings

Author's label Subject Description Finding Age Current age (in years) Educational level Level of school-education Unfulfilled aspirations: education, follow a talent Educational aspirations
Realization of educational goals
Specific concerns
Specific changes wanted
Desired personal changes: more education Educational aspirations
Object of life-goals
Specific changes wanted
White race Ethnic status in the USA Childlessness Current parental status State of family relationships Current climate
Perceived quality of intimate ties
Most important worry: health (personal and family Concern about intimates
Concerns about health
Specific concerns
Specific worries
Unfulfilled aspirations: marriage, children, husband Current want for children
Perceived realization of specific life-goals
Children as planned
Specific changes wanted
Male sex Sex (male vs female) Perceived happiest period Happiest period in life Perceived major factor in people's happiness Perceived sources of every-bodies happiness Perceived major factor in people's Unhappiness Perceived sources of every-bodies happiness Positive attitude towards marriage Perceived level of happiness of specific social categories
Perceived happiness of the married
Meaning attached to the word "happiness" Concept of happiness
Perceived sources of happiness
Happy nature Self-perceived happy nature
Happy
Satisfaction with marriage In specific periods in the past
Attitudes to one's own marital status
Satisfaction with marriage
Self-perceived health Global health rating Desired personal changes: health Concerns about health
Specific changes wanted
Desired personal changes Specific changes wanted
Specific concerns
Desire to change Wish to change life Unfulfilled aspirations mentioned Perceived realization of specific life-goals
Object of life-goals
Attitudes to one's possessions
Attitudes to leisure
Aspired income-increase
Occupational aspirations
Attitudes to entering marriage
Attitude to having children
Specific changes wanted
Satisfaction with housework Satisfaction with home-making Economic status 'Objective' socio-economic status Unfulfilled aspirations: money Income aspirations
Perceived realization of specific life-goals
Object of life-goals
Materialism
Specific concerns
Specific changes wanted
Most important worry: financial worries, money Worrying about money
Specific worries
Specific concerns
Time spent in disliked activities Time spent on disliked activities
Satisfaction with time-use
Never married (vs widowed) Vs widowed Married (vs never married) Married vs never married Married (vs widowed) Married vs widowed Married (vs divorced) Married vs divorced Never married (vs divorced) Vs divorced Widowed (vs divorced) Vs divorced Caring about what other people think of you Approval seeking
Specific concerns
Ease of making friends Sociable
Ability to maintain intimate contacts
Length Heigth Overweight Weight Desired personal changes: physical: appearance Interest in appearance
Specific concerns
Specific changes wanted
Most important worry politics, world and national conditions Political concern
Specific worries
Specific concerns
Amount of worrying Amount of worrying Most important worry Specific worries
Specific concerns
Religiousness Satisfaction with religion Non-religious Church-member or not Religious affiliation Church-member or not
Current religious denomination
Church attendance Participation in church Satisfaction with present age Satisfaction with age Satisfaction with community Attitude to vinicity
Specific changes wanted
Satisfaction with friends Satisfaction with friends
Specific changes wanted
Job satisfaction Satisfaction with work-as-a-whole Satisfaction with housework Satisfaction with home-making Desire: character changes (worry less) Concern about character
Specific changes wanted
Attitudes to own worrying
Most important worry: personality Concern about character
Specific worries
Specific concerns
Desire: better social relationships Concern about intimates
Specific changes wanted
Worry: work conditions Current concern about work
Specific worries
Unfulfilled aspirations: new job, own business Occupational aspirations
Perceived realization of specific life-goals
Specific changes wanted
Unfulfilled aspirations: move to country, become farmer Occupational aspirations
Perceived realization of specific life-goals
Attitude to urban life
Specific changes wanted
Attitudes to farming
Desire: better work and attitudes towards it Occupational aspirations
Specific changes wanted
Current concern about work
Having unfulfilled aspirations Perceived realization of life-goal set
O-HL by C-RW
Having goals or not (life-planning)