Single-item happiness measure features adequate validity among adolescents

Lukoševičiūtė, J., Gariepy, G., Mabelis, J. , Gaspar, T., Joffė-Luinienė, R. and Šmigelskas, K. (2022) Single-item happiness measure features adequate validity among adolescents. Frontiers in Psychology, 13, 884520. (doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2022.884520) (PMID:35837634) (PMCID:PMC9274985)

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Background: Happiness is becoming increasingly relevant in recent research, including adolescents. Many studies are using the single-item measure for adolescent happiness, however, its validity is not well known. We aimed to examine the validity of this measure among adolescents in three countries from distinct European regions – Eastern (Lithuania), Southern (Portugal), and Western (Scotland). Materials and Methods: The analysis included data from Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study from three countries and three last surveys (2009/10, 2013/14, and 2017/18). The total sample comprised 47,439 schoolchildren. For validity, the indicators reflecting subjective health, life satisfaction, quality of life, well-being, social support, health complaints, bullying, and self-directed violence were assessed. The calculations were conducted in the total sample and by gender, age, survey year, and country. Results: The different indicators of concurrent and convergent validity revealed consistent correlations with happiness, with better well-being, health, and subjective perceptions being related to higher happiness. Meanwhile, health complaints, bullying behaviors, and self-directed violence were related to lower happiness. The subgroup differences were consistent across gender, age groups, countries, and survey rounds. The extent of differences was more expressed among girls. Conclusion: The single item for adolescent happiness measurement features a consistent pattern of validity concerning indicators of concurrent and convergent validity. Higher self-reported happiness is associated with better mental and physical health and well-being, and less expressed negative factors (complaints, bullying, and self-directed violence). In addition, among girls the correlations tend to be stronger than boys.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Mabelis, Ms Judith
Authors: Lukoševičiūtė, J., Gariepy, G., Mabelis, J., Gaspar, T., Joffė-Luinienė, R., and Šmigelskas, K.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Frontiers in Psychology
Publisher:Frontiers Media
ISSN (Online):1664-1078
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 Lukoševičiūtė, Gariepy, Mabelis, Gaspar, Joffė-Luinienė and Šmigelskas
First Published:First published in Frontiers in Psychology 13: 884520
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
3048231Complexity in healthSharon SimpsonMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_00022/1HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
3048231Complexity in healthSharon SimpsonOffice of the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSO)SPHSU16HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit