This research was carried out to determine if psychosocial adjustment improves for elderly persons engaged in volunteer activity. Questionnaires were completed by 27 persons aged 60 or over before and two months after beginning volunteer activity at one of 33 Florida community hospitals. A control group of 37 persons without hospital volunteer experience also completed these two questionnaires, which covered several aspects of psychosocial adjustment, including self-esteem, life satisfaction, sense of control, optimism, anxiety, depression and somatization. An analysis of covariance iwth repeated measures indicated that there was no significant improvement in subjective well-being associated with volunteer activity after accounting for the influence of background factors. Recommendations for future research include greater control over the variability of the volunteer setting and the importance of involving persons initially experiencing low levels of psychosocial adjustment, factors which may be responsible in this case for the lack of significant treatment effects.
Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Arts and Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Criss, William R., "Effects of Volunteer Activity on Psychosocial Adjustment Among the Elderly" (1987). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 5052.