Adam H.

asked • 14d

what are the Implications of a study that found a negative correlation between happiness and academic achievement?

I have conducted a multiple regression analysis for a dissertation looking a the relationship between academic achievement and happiness, and academic achievement and self-esteem. The results were irregular and unusual as it was shown that happiness was negatively correlated with academic achievement by 30% and a nonsignificant result was calculated for self-esteem and academic achievement.

In my discussion, I need to find implications for my study. But my study has essentially found that universities should make students as sad as possible to get better grades. Obviously makes no sense. My nonsignificant result for self-esteem also makes it difficult to generalise or conclude anything from my study. Any ideas as to what to say?

3 Answers By Expert Tutors


David B. answered • 14d

4.8 (43)

Math and Statistics need not be scary

Adam H.

Thanks for the answer. Unfortunately, I believe I have been too vague in my question. The title of my dissertation is "how well do the measures of happiness and self-esteem predict academic achievement?" The scales I have used are Hills and Argyle 2002 Oxford Happiness Questionnaire and Rosenberg's 1965 Self-esteem Scale. Both Highly regarded in the psychological community. I then used average grade to measure academic achievement which is fairly mainstream as well. I understand the difference between causation and correlation. But I think you will find it difficult to find a study concluding less happy students get better grades. I certainly have. The general consensus on the topic is happiness and self-esteem very much predict academic achievement. The problem I essentially have, is my study disagrees and challenges all past literature (Quinn & Duckworth, 2007; Tabbodi et al., 2015; Chan et al., 2005; Walter, 2003; Booth & Gerard, 2011). I had a very limited sample size of 100 participants which I know is not enough to generalise results. However, a requirement to get a decent grade would be to add implications to my study in the discussion section. Therefore I refer back to my original question. What are the implications of a study that found happiness was negatively correlated with academic achievement by 30%? Even after I had conducted all appropriate preliminary tests (multicollinearity, cooks distance, Shapiro Wilk, Durbin Watson etc). I am struggling to find any sensible implication my study has on the real world. Apologies for the vague question and lack of detail, I wasn't expecting such an in-depth answer. Hopefully, I have clarified it a little. Thanks


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