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Study of the Relationship Between Life Satisfaction and Materialism Celina Roybal Northern New Mexico College Department of Humanities, Social Sciences,

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Presentation on theme: "Study of the Relationship Between Life Satisfaction and Materialism Celina Roybal Northern New Mexico College Department of Humanities, Social Sciences,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Study of the Relationship Between Life Satisfaction and Materialism Celina Roybal Northern New Mexico College Department of Humanities, Social Sciences, and Language & Letters Abstract Hypothesis Theory Introduction Research Design Results Ethics and Discussion Conclusions References Acknowledgements The purpose of this exploratory project is to examine the relationship between life satisfaction and materialism, specifically among the diverse ethnic population of students attending Northern New Mexico College during the Spring 2014 semester. Previous studies have found a negative relationship between materialism and life satisfaction. Based on past research the hypotheses for the current study are that individuals who report lower life satisfaction will be more materialistic than individual’s who report higher life satisfaction; individuals who report higher life satisfaction will be less materialistic; and males will be more materialistic than females. Sample selection was conducted through convenience sampling and surveys.  The study of materialism falls under the current paradigms of consumer psychology which is a combination of psychology, sociology, and economics. Consumer psychology is the study of when, how, why, and where people will buy along with their feelings, thoughts and beliefs that influence buying habits.  This study seeks to add research to the field of consumer psychology and to raise awareness in consumers.  The hypotheses of this study are that individuals who report lower life satisfaction will be more materialistic than individual’s who report higher life satisfaction, individuals who report higher life satisfaction will be less materialistic.  Males will be more materialistic than females.  There will be no relationship between materialism and age.  There will be no relationship between materialism and socioeconomic status.  There will be no relationship between materialism and ethnicity. Ahuvia, A.C., & Wong, N.Y. (2002). Personality and Values Based Materialism: Their Relationship and Origins. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 12 (4), Burroughs, J. E., & Rindfleisch, A. Materialism and Well- Being: A Conflicting Values Perspective. J ournal of Consumer Research, 29 (3), Diener, Ed, Emmons, Larsen, R.J., & Griffen, S. (1985).The Satisfaction With Life Scale. J ournal of Personality Assessment, 49 (1), Mcgraw-Hill. Richins and Dawson. Measuring Materialism and Happiness Survey. highered.mcgraw-hill.com.hthttp:hthttp: Pavot, W., Diener, E. (1993). Review of The Satisfaction With Life Scale. Psychological Assessment, 5 (2), American Psychological Association, Inc. Richins, M. L. (1992).A Consumer Values Orientation for Materialism and Its Measurement: Scale Development and Validation. Journal of Consumer Research, 19(3), Ryan, L., & Dziurawiec, S. (2001). Materialism and its Relationship to Life Satisfaction. Social Indicators Research, 22 (2), Dr. Stephanie Amedeo Marquez Dr. Tucker Brown Dr. Matthew Martinez  Sample selection was conducted through convenience sampling. This type of sampling is not ideal because it is not representative of a population. Random sampling is the best type of sampling because it is unbiased, representative of a population, and provides generalization. However, for this project random sampling is not feasible. Classical experiment design was not feasible. Research was conducted through surveys. Participants were chosen from students attending Northern New Mexico College during the spring 2014 semester. Permission was attained from two NNMC instructors to survey students in class and additional surveys were collected through convenience from NNMC students. Sample size was small, N=34.  Richens & Dawson’s Material Values Scale (MVS) was used to determine levels and subcomponents of materialism The MVS is an18 item survey scaled from 1: Strongly disagree to 5: Strongly agree. Richens measures materialism as a set of personal values. Richens divides these values into personal and social and these are further separated into three parts: 1. Centrality: the general importance attached to possessions and the idea that they play a central role in the life of the individual. 2. Happiness: the belief that owing certain possessions leads to well-being and that the individual will be happier if he or she had more or better things. 3. Success: the individual believes that success can be judged by their possessions.  Ed Diener’s The Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS) was used to determine life satisfaction. It is a 5 item survey scaled from 1: Strongly Disagree to 7: Strongly Agree. “Life satisfaction” is based on Ed Diener’s The Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS) which measures general life satisfaction “based on a comparison with a standard which each individual sets for him or herself; it is not externally imposed” (Diener, Emmons, Larsen, and Griffen, , pp 71). It does not ask the participant about specific areas of their lives, but for an “overall evaluation of their life” (Diener, et al pp 71).  Data analysis was conducted through SurveyMonkey.com  A “Protecting Human Research Participants” web-based training course through the National Institute of Health Office (NIH) of Extramural Research (appendix II) was completed and research was conducted following the guidelines learned through this training.  All participants were given written and verbal informed consent information explaining that participation is voluntary, anonymous, and confidential. Hispanic (including Coyote, Chicano, and Spanish) (N=23) Female: 13 Male: 10 Native American (including Native) (N=5) Female: 2 Male: 3 Caucasian (including Northern European Origin and Sikhism) (N=4) Female: 1 Male: 3 African American (N=2)Female: 1 Male: 1 I am satisfied with life. (N=32)5.72 So far I have gotten the important things I want in life. (N=33)5.27 The conditions of my life are excellent. (N=33)4.94 In most ways my life is close to my ideal. (N=34)4.88 If I could live my life over, I would change almost nothing. (34)4.62 I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. (N=34)3.91 I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. (N=34)3.74 I don’t pay much attention to the material objects other people own. (N=34)3.65 I try to keep my life simple as far as possessions are concerned. (N=34)3.59 I don’t place much emphasis on material objects as a sign of people’s success. (N=33) 3.42 I wouldn’t be any happier if I owned nicer things. (N=34)3.32 I wouldn’t be any happier if I could afford to buy more things. (N=34)2.94 It sometimes bothers me quite a bit that I can’t afford to buy all the things that I’d like. (N=34) 2.94 The things I own say a lot about how well I’m doing in life. (N=34)2.79 I usually buy only the things I need. (N=34)2.79 Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. (N=34)2.71 Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. (N=34) 2.68 The things I own aren’t all that important to me. (N=34)2.68 I admire people who own expensive homes, cars, and clothes. (N=34)2.62 I enjoy spending money on things that aren’t practical. (N=33)2.61 My life would be better if I owned certain things I don’t have. (N=34)2.56 I like a lot of luxury in my life.2.55 I like to own things that impress people.2.06 Ethnicity Satisfaction With Life Satisfaction With Life: Female/Male Comparison Material Values Scale Material Values Scale: Female/Male Comparison  Overall life satisfaction was high. The highest rating average is 5.72 for the question “I am satisfied with life.”  The lowest endorsement is 4.62 for the question “If I could live my life over, I would change almost nothing.”  A quantitative bivariate analysis of male/female satisfaction with life (N=34) shows that males reported slightly higher satisfaction with life than females in this study. In most ways my life is close to my ideal. Strongly Disagree– Disagree– Slightly Disagree– Neither Agree or Disagree– Slightly Agree– Agree– Strongly Agree– Total– – –5.88% 11.76%17.65% 35.29%5.88% Q5: female –0.00% 11.76% 29.41%47.06%0.00% Q5: male The conditions of my life are excellent. Strongly Disagree– Disagree– Slightly Disagree– Neither Agree or Disagree– Slightly Agree– Agree– Strongly Agree– Total– – –5.88% 17.65%0.00%17.65%47.06%5.88% Q5: female –6.25%0.00%12.50%0.00%31.25%43.75%6.25% Q5: male I am satisfied with life. Strongly Disagree– Disagree– Slightly Disagree– Neither Agree or Disagree– Slightly Agree– Agree– Strongly Agree– Total– – –0.00% 6.25%12.50% 31.25%37.50% Q5: female –0.00%6.25% 0.00%18.75%43.75%25.00% Q5: male So far I have gotten the important things I want in life. Strongly Disagree– Disagree– Slightly Disagree– Neither Agree or Disagree– Slightly Agree– Agree– Strongly Agree– Total– – –0.00% 11.76% 29.41%35.29%11.76% Q5: female –6.25%0.00%6.25%0.00%25.00%56.25%6.25% Q5: male If I could live my life over, I would change almost nothing. Strongly Disagree– Disagree– Slightly Disagree– Neither Agree or Disagree– Slightly Agree– Agree– Strongly Agree– Total– – –5.88%11.76% 23.53%11.76%17.65% Q5: female –5.88%11.76%17.65%0.00%17.65%23.53% Q5: male  A quantitative analysis of the highest endorsed Satisfaction With Life Scale with one question from each of the subcomponents of the Material Values Scale shows:  Success: The majority of participants who agreed that they were satisfied with life disagreed that their life would be better if they owned certain things they don’t have.  Centrality: Only 1 participant agreed that they were satisfied with life stated that they would be happier if they could afford to buy more things (stating 'strongly agree’).  Happiness: The majority of participants who agreed that they are satisfied with life disagreed that they enjoy spending money on things that aren’t practical.  Based on the crosstab analysis of the highest endorsed Satisfaction With Life Scale question and questions from the subcomponents of the Material Values Scale the conclusion of this study is that high life satisfaction may be related to low materialism.  The data supports the hypothesis that males may be more materialistic than females.  There was not enough data to determine a relationship between materialism and ethnicity, age, or socioeconomic status.  Due to problems with survey format and compatibility some answer options were not included in analysis. This reduces the number of responses analyzed from the original small sample.  Given more time and a larger sample correlations would have been conducted.  There may be discrepancies between what participants reported and actual behavior. Previous studies have found a negative relationship between life satisfaction and materialism; that there is no relationship between materialism and age, socioeconomic statues; and that males are more materialistic than females. My theory is that similar results, in these variables will be found in the Northern New Mexico College sample population. Life Satisfaction/Materialism Analysis Success: My life would be better if I owned certain things I don’t have. Strongly DisagreeDisagreeAgreeStrongly AgreeTotal I am satisfied with life: Strongly Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 0 I am satisfied with life: Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 1 I am satisfied with life: Agree 16.67% % % % 0 8 I am satisfied with life: Strongly Agree 10.00% % % % 1 8 Centrality: I’d be happier if I could afford to buy more things. Strongly DisagreeDisagreeAgreeStrongly AgreeTotal I am satisfied with life: Strongly Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 0 I am satisfied with life: Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 1 I am satisfied with life: Agree 25.00% % % % 1 8 I am satisfied with life: Strongly Agree 10.00% % % % 0 8 Happiness: I enjoy spending money on things that aren’t practical. Strongly DisagreeDisagreeAgreeStrongly AgreeTotal I am satisfied with life: Strongly Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 8 I am satisfied with life: Disagree 0.00% % % % 0 1 I am satisfied with life: Agree 16.67% % % % 0 8 I am satisfied with life: Strongly Agree 30.00% % % % 0 9 Ahuvia, A.C., & Wong, N.Y. (2002). Personality and Values Based Materialism: Their Relationship and Origins. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 12 (4), Burroughs, J. E., & Rindfleisch, A. Materialism and Well- Being: A Conflicting Values Perspective. J ournal of Consumer Research, 29 (3), Diener, Ed, Emmons, Larsen, R.J., & Griffen, S. (1985).The Satisfaction With Life Scale. J ournal of Personality Assessment, 49 (1), Mcgraw-Hill. Richins and Dawson. Measuring Materialism and Happiness Survey. highered.mcgraw-hill.com.hthttp:hthttp: Pavot, W., Diener, E. (1993). Review of The Satisfaction With Life Scale. Psychological Assessment, 5 (2), American Psychological Association, Inc. Richins, M. L. (1992).A Consumer Values Orientation for Materialism and Its Measurement: Scale Development and Validation. Journal of Consumer Research, 19(3), Ryan, L., & Dziurawiec, S. (2001). Materialism and its Relationship to Life Satisfaction. Social Indicators Research, 22 (2),


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