Children’s and Adolescents’ Happiness Conceptualizations at School and their Link with Autonomy, Competence, and Relatedness

Lopez-Perez, B. and Zuffiano, A. (2020) Children’s and Adolescents’ Happiness Conceptualizations at School and their Link with Autonomy, Competence, and Relatedness. Journal of Happiness Studies. ISSN 1389-4978

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Abstract

Previous research on children’s and adolescents’happiness either focused on their conceptualisations or the link between self-reported happiness with different outcomes.
However, very few studies have connected both approaches to better understand children’s and adolescents’ happiness. To address this gap, we used a mixed-method approach, to investigate if the conceptualizations of happiness at school of 744 British children and adolescents could signal differences in autonomy, competence, and relatedness. An initial coding of the responses showed thirteen conceptualizations (i.e., positive feelings, harmony/balance, leisure, friends, getting good grades, non-violence, moral actions, purpose, autonomy, competence, teachers, emotional support, and learning). Log-linear models showed that some of the conceptualizations differed across both age groups and gender. Latent class analysis showed that happiness conceptualizations could be classified in five
different groups. Interestingly, whereas for children there were no differences; for
adolescents, there were differences between classes in their levels of autonomy and relatedness. The implications of these findings for promoting students' well-being at school are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information and Comments: This is the author's version of an article that was accepted for publication in the Journal of Happiness Studies. The final publication is available at https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10902-020-00267-z
Keywords: children; adolescents; happiness; school; self-determination theory.
Faculty / Department: Faculty of Science > Psychology
Depositing User: Belen Lopez-Perez
Date Deposited: 29 May 2020 12:01
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2020 09:23
URI: https://hira.hope.ac.uk/id/eprint/3078

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