Does psychological well-being change with age? Longitudinal tests of age variations and further exploration of the multidimensionality of Ryff's model of psychological well-being

Kristen W. Springer, Tetyana Pudrovska, Robert M. Hauser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations

Abstract

Using two population-based surveys, we provide the first test of longitudinal age variations in Ryff's model of psychological well-being (RPWB) across three midlife to later-life transitions. Through these analyses we explore: (a) age variation in RPWB, (b) the structure of RPWB, and (c) the potential for methodologically driven age patterns. In general, RPWB dimensions do not consistently exhibit distinct age profiles; further, longitudinal age variations are exceptionally small, never accounting for more than 4% of the variance. We observe far greater variation within ages or periods than between subscales across age or time - providing strong evidence against substantively different age profiles of RPWB. Moreover, heterogeneity among positively and negatively worded items yield varied age patterns indicating that the small age variations of RWPB could be driven, at least in part, by methodological artifacts rather than maturation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)392-398
Number of pages7
JournalSocial Science Research
Volume40
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science

Keywords

  • Age and well-being
  • Aging
  • Longitudinal analyses
  • Measurement
  • Psychological well-being
  • Validity

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