Findings on happiness in Sheldon & Elliot (1999): study US 1994

Author(s)Sheldon, K.M.; Elliot, A.J.
TitleGoal Striving, Need Satisfaction, and Longitudinal Well-Being: The Self-Concordance Model.
SourceJournal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1999, Vol. 76, 482 - 497
Public18+ aged, students USA, followed 3 months,199?
 Year of dara gathering not reported. T1: at beginning of semester, T2-T4: measurements approximately once a month, T5: 3 months after T1
Survey nameNot available
SampleNon-probability chunk sample
Respondents N =169
 75 men, 94 women
Non ResponseNot available
AssesmentQuestionnaire: paper
 T1+T5: in-class questionnaires T2-T4: questionnaires within lab-sessions
Happiness measure(s) used
Full textSelfreport on 25 questions A Selfreport on life satisfaction on five questions a In most ways my life is close to ideal b The conditions of my life are excellent c I am satisfied with my life d So far, I have gotten the important things I want in life e If I could live my life over, I would change nothing Answers rated: 7 strongly agree ...1 strongly disagree (Diener's Satisfaction With Life Scale, SWLS) B Selfreport on mood on 20 questions How much of each mood did you experience in the last month? a nervous b distressed c afraid d jittery e irritable f upset g scared h exiled i ashamed j guilty k hostile l active m determined n inspired o enthusiastic p alert q attentive r proud s strong t interested Answered: 1 not at all 7 very frequently (Watson's Positive And Negative Affect Scale PANAS) Summation: First computation of z-scores of A (life-satisfaction), Ba-k (negative affect) and Bl-t (positive affect). Next zA + zBl-t -zBa-k Answer options: a 1 very slightly or not at all b 2 a little c 3 moderately d 4 quite a bit e 5 extremely Negative affect score (NAS): A to K Positive affect score (PAS): L to T Affect Balance Score (ABS): PAS - NAS Name: Watson et al's PANAS ('past few weeks' version)
Author's labelsubjective well-being
Finding used in
nation ranks

Correlational findings

Author's label Our subject description
Self-concordanceshow  Authenticity of earlier goals
Self-concordanceshow  Authenticity of goals, also classified as above ↑
Self-concordanceshow  Current motivation, also classified as above ↑
Self-concordanceshow  Motivation career, also classified as above ↑
Semester attainmentshow  Perceived realization of life-goals
Semester effortshow  Current motivation
Semester effortshow  Involvement in life-goals, also classified as above ↑