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Verification and Enhancement in Predicting Relationship Satisfaction: Does Context Matter?

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Item Summary Bennett, Christine 2017-12-18T20:57:25Z 2017-12-18T20:57:25Z 2015-05
dc.description M.A. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2015.
dc.description Includes bibliographical references.
dc.description.abstract Self-verification theory argues that people attempt to maintain and preserve their self-perceptions by acting in ways that reinforce their self-concepts, or how they view themselves (Swann et al., 1987). Contrasting with verification theories, self-enhancement theories argue that people prefer positive feedback, regardless of their own self-concept. Evidence exists supporting both sides of this debate. In the domain of romantic relationships, this issue has been extensively investigated but it is still unclear if the two theories can truly be separated. Research has also found that context influences these preferences, such that people tend to prefer being enhanced when they must evaluate the feedback publicly, but not when their evaluation is private (Baumgardner, Kaufman, & Levy, 1989). This study sought to test the two theories by investigating if verification and enhancement interact with context (public or private) to predict relationship satisfaction. Participants in both public and private conditions were evaluated using measures of self-concept, perceived partner regard, satisfaction, and commitment. The amount of difference between a participant’s self-concept and perceived partner regard score indicated whether they were in a verifying or enhancing relationship. It was proposed that people would privately report higher relationship satisfaction when their partner is verifying, but when reporting publicly there would be no significant difference in relationship satisfaction when a partner is verifying or enhancing. However, it was found that participants reported similar levels of satisfaction regardless of context.
dc.language.iso eng
dc.publisher [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2015]
dc.relation Theses for the degree of Master of Arts (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Psychology
dc.subject verification
dc.subject enhancement
dc.subject relationship satisfaction
dc.title Verification and Enhancement in Predicting Relationship Satisfaction: Does Context Matter?
dc.type Thesis
dc.type.dcmi Text
Appears in Collections: M.A. - Psychology

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