Relations between Social Support and Well-being in Adolescents 3rd International Conference of the International Society For Child Indicators Jorge Castellá Sarriera, Lívia Maria Bedin, Eveline Favero, Daniel Abs, Mariana C. Benchaya& Tiago Z.Calza email@example.com Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS, Brazil) Research Group in Community Psychology (GPPC) University of York, UK • 27–29 July 2011
Introduction • Social support: • Is based on the social support concept proposed by Cobb (1976), and after used by Vaux (1988), who defines it as the information that makes someone believe that is cared and loved, esteemed and valued. • Information of support can be transmitted through intimate situations involving mutual trust and it’s often referred to as emotional support. • Positive relationship with support persons, such as parents, contribute to the improvement of the adolescents’ well-being (Ben-Zur, 2003). • In the presence of social support there is a better well-being perception (Petito & Cummins, 2000).
Introduction Personal Well-Being • It is conceptualized as feeling good or not, along the life cycle overall, not in occasional moments of life. • It can be understood as a reciprocal relationship between internal aspects (psychological) and its external interactions with other people and the context (psychosocial). Casas (2010); Cummins, Eckersley, Pallant, Van Vugt & Misajon (2003)
Objective • This paper aimed to verify possible differences between personal well-being and social support in adolescents considering age and gender and to explore relations between this variables in the sample.
Method • Sample: • 1,589 students (548 boys and 1,081 girls) from five cities in the state of Rio Grande do Sul (the capital state city and four other smaller cities of countryside). • Ages ranged between 12 and 16 years old, with a mean of 14.13 (SD = 1.26).
Instruments: • Social Support Appraisals Scale (SSA, Vaux et al., 1986) • SSA measures the adolescents’ perception of the social support provided by their family, friends and others in general. In this study, only items related to the family and friends subscales were used. • It consists of 12 agree-disagree items ranging from 0 to 10 • In this study, the SSA’s Cronbach’s Alpha was 0.86.
Instruments • Personal Well-being Index (PWI) • Assessment of people’s satisfaction with general aspects of life (Cummins, Eckersley, Pallant, Van Vugt, & Misajon, 2003). • The PWI-7 consists of the following seven items: • Satisfaction with health, living standards, what one has achieved in life, security, the groups of people one is part of, security about the future and the relationships one has with others. • In this study, the PWI-7’s Cronbach’s Alpha was 0.78.
Procedure • The participants were contacted through public and private schools belonging to the cities in the sample. • The selected schools were randomized from a list provided by the Department of Education of the State of Rio Grande do Sul. • The final survey participants were volunteer students who returned a term of free and clear consent signed by them and by their parents or guardians. • The questionnaires were applied collectively in a room provided by each school. • All ethical requirements for research with human beings were followed.
Results Average and standard deviation for the Personal Well-being Index by age and gender groups.
Results • Interactions between age and gender and PWI.
Results Average and standard deviation for the SSA by age and gender groups.
Results • Interactions between age and gender for: • Family Social Support • Friends Social Support
Results Analysis of variance of PWI and Friends and Family Social Support
Results • Pearson correlations were performed and Significant correlations were found between the Personal Well-Being Index with all items of perceived friends’ and family’s social support (p < 0.001), • It was performed a Confirmatory Factorial Analysis of the scales SSA and PWI with the entire sample. Adjusts presented satisfactory results according to the literature (Batista-Foguet & Coenders, 2000; Byrne, 2001), • A final model was built using the Personal Well-Being Index as a factor related to social support.
Results Final model of relation between Social Support and PWI
Results Fit statistics for the factor structure a model
Discussion • The perception of social support in adolescence can vary with time, since changes in relationship groups, such as parents and friends, often take place. • Family and Friend’s influence has fundamental importance in this stage of life due to the processes of independence and autonomy, especially in regards to emotional support, loyalty, understanding and intimacy (Antunes & Fontaine, 2005). • Also, trust of family and friends, both included in this research, are important to aid the development of the adolescent’s independence and autonomy.
Discussion • Family and friends still have a central role in the adolescent’s development (Pratta & Santos, 2007) and interventions that promote and strengthen the social support from these groups are important. • The support system may also be develop beyond family and friends, and may constitute an important source of esteem, care, respect and affiliation to a group (López-Cabanas & Chacón, 1997; Gracia, 1998).
Contributions • To verify the relationship between perceived support in adolescents’ close relationships and their well-being in a theoretical model that can be applied to different age groups of teenagers, regardless of gender. • This proper fit of the model is important for future research on the relationships and contexts of adolescents and their direct or indirect impact on their quality of life. • Despite the good model fitting, it is considered that cultural differences can have an effect on the results and that more research can be undertaken in this respect, since these relations tend to be established differently in other cultures.
References • Antunes, C., & Fountaine, A. M. (2005). Percepção de Apoio Social na Adolescência: Análise Fatorial Confirmatória da Escala Social Support Appraisals. Paidéia, 15(32), 355-366. Retrieved from http://www.scielo.br/pdf/paideia/v15n32/05.pdf. • Batista-Foguet, J. M. & Coenders, G. (2000). Modelos de Ecuaciones Estructurales. Madrid: La Muralla. • Ben-Zur, H. (2003). Happy adolescents: The link between subjective well-being, internal resources, and parental factors. Journal of Youth & Adolescence, 32(2), 67-79. doi: 0047-2891/03/0400-0067/0. • Byrne, B.M. (2001). Structural Equation Modeling With AMOS: Basic Concepts, Applications, and Programming. New Jersey: LEA. • Casas, F. (2010). El bienestar personal: Su investigación en la infancia y la adolescencia. Encuentros en Psicología Social, 5(1), 85-101. • Campbell, A., Converse, P. E., & Rogers, W. L. (1976). The quality of American life: Perceptions, evaluations, and satisfactions. Nueva York. Russell Sage. • Cobb, S. (1976). Social support as a moderator of life stress. Psychosomatic Medicine,38(5), 300-314. Retrieved from http://www.psychosomaticmedicine.org/ cgi/reprint/38/5/300. • Cummins, R.A., Eckersley, R. Pallant, J. Van Vugt, J, & Misajon, R. (2003). Developing a national index of subjective wellbeing: The Australian Unity Wellbeing Index. Social Indicators Research, 64, 159-190.
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Relations between Social Support and Well-being in Adolescents 3rd International Conference of the International Society For Child Indicators Jorge Castellá Sarriera, Lívia Maria Bedin, Eveline Favero, Daniel Abs, Mariana C. Benchaya& Tiago Z.Calza email@example.com Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS, Brazil) Grupo de Pesquisa em Psicologia Comunitária (GPPC) University of York, UK • 27–29 July 2011