Findings on happiness in Costa & McCrae (1980): study US 1965

Author(s)Costa, P.T.; McCrae, R.R.
TitleInfluence of Extraversion and Neuroticism on Subjective Well-Being: Happy and Unhappy People.
SourceJournal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1980, Vol. 38, 668 - 678
Public25-75 aged white males (largely veterans), followed 10 years, USA, 1965-76
 T1:1965; T2:1976
Survey nameNot available
SampleNot available
 Non-probability chunk sample of volunteers screened for health and geo- graphical stability.
Respondents N =234
Non ResponseNot available
AssesmentQuestionnaire: paper
 Mailed questionnaires at ten years interval
General remarksExtra-version and neuroticism assessed in 1965, happiness (affect) assessed in 1976.
Happiness measure(s) used
Full textSelfreport on10 questions asked 4 times a year at 3 month intervals. "During the past few weeks, did you ever feel.....?" (yes/no) A Particularly excited, or interested in something? B So restless that you could not sit long in a chair? C Proud because someone complimented you on something you had done? D Very lonely or remote from people? E Pleased about having accomplished something? F Bored? G On top of the world? H Depressed? I That things were going your way? J Upset because someone criticized you? Scoring: yes = 1, no is = 0 Summation: -Positive Affect Score (PAS): A+C+E+G+I -Negative Affect Score (NAS): B+D+F+H+J -Affect Balance Score (ABS): PAS minus NAS Possible: range: -5 to +5 Name: Bradburn's `Affect Balance Scale'
Author's labelSubjective well-being; happiness
Finding used in
nation ranks

Correlational findings

Author's labelSubject Code
Subject description
ExtraversionP02ab12Earlier extraversion
NeuroticismH13aa01Earlier mental health
NeuroticismP02ab17Earlier neurotocism, also classified as above ↑
NeuroticismH15aa01Earlier psycho-somatic complaints, also classified as above ↑