The Relationship between Coping Mechanisms and Life Satisfaction

Faculty Sponsor

Matthew Ringenberg


Arts and Sciences


Social Work

ORCID Identifier(s)

0000-0003-4482-6624, 0000-0003-0739-2986,0000-0003-4070-0557

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Symposium Date

Spring 4-23-2016


The purpose of this study was to determine the correlation of coping mechanisms used by undergraduate college students throughout academic years and compare an individual’s level of life satisfaction. Approximately 100 college students at Valparaiso University were surveyed using a questionnaire filled with a Likert Scale to rank how often the student participated in coping mechanisms listed by the research group. Erikson and the System’s Theory perspectives were intertwined in the previous studies regarding how interactions, such as human relationships, could make a positive effect in developmental growth and coping, and how effective the environment played a role in an individual's life. Researchers were interested on how the multiple regression determined which coping mechanisms were used most frequently in the different academic years tested (freshman, sophomores, juniors, and seniors). In addition, researchers were curious to how specific coping mechanisms were related to the individual’s level of life satisfaction, which was dependent on the scale measurement featured on the questionnaire as well.

Biographical Information about Author(s)

Ashley Heisey, Meagan McCarver, and Tim Standiford are all social work majors at Valparaiso University. They had an interest in coping mechanisms among college students at the university. Additionally, they wanted to see how happy these students are with their coping. All three have had previous experience working with individuals and coping mechanisms in internships through the department such as in elementary school social work, behavior modification clinics, and day services for clients with dementia, respectfully. Future goals for the entire group include graduate school to become master level social workers.

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