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How Personality Traits and Affective States Influence a Student’s Outlook on Life after University; A Correlational Study

Henderson, Katie (2019) How Personality Traits and Affective States Influence a Student’s Outlook on Life after University; A Correlational Study. Manchester Metropolitan University. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

This correlational study examined the relationships between Personality, Optimism, Hope and Anxiety in relation to a student’s outlook on life after University. The aim of the present study was derived from previous studies suggesting how positive affective states such as optimism and hope have important psychological benefits which can also predict a more favourable future. Hypotheses were created in order to make assumptions about the potential findings and they were all met with the exception of one. There were 214 respondents acquired through convenience sampling and they completed an 81-item questionnaire comprised of five separate scales corresponding to the five measures of the study. The main findings showed that on average, respondents were optimistic and hopeful but were also moderately anxious. The optimism and hope measures were most strongly correlated to a positive outlook on life and significant correlations between all of the independent variables were found, showing multicollinearity. Upon multiple regression analysis, it was found that Hope (Agency) was the largest predicting variable whereas Anxiety was not found to be a significant predictor. Adequate suggestions for future research were made in relation to the methodological issues raised along the way and derived from findings of previous studies.

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