Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name



Quantitative Research Methods

First Advisor

Kathy E. Green, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Duan Zhang

Third Advisor

Frederique Chevillot


Relationship satisfaction, Analysis of attitudes, Societal norms and expectations, Self-Esteem, Attachment styles


While many studies have examined the effects of persuasion on attitudes, few studies have focused on using norms to change perceived satisfaction. This study addressed the need for literature assessing the effects of societal norms on perceived relationship satisfaction. Participants in this study were randomly provided with one of two surveys: one with a set of normative statements regarding an "average couple" that were over-exaggerated, the other with understated norms. Analyses looked to identify whether individuals presented with the high norms were more likely to rate their relationship satisfaction lower, after controlling for demographic and personality characteristics. Hierarchical regression revealed that nearly all of the variance in relationship satisfaction could be explained by variability in the personality variables (self-esteem and attachment-style), resulting in a weak relationship between high/low norms and relationship satisfaction. Auxiliary analysis limited to individuals with normal self-esteem ranges identified that the high/low norms variable contributed the most to the regression model, although not statistically significant (p = 0.172). The bivariate correlation for this auxiliary analysis between RAS score and high/low norms (r = -.073) indicates that participants presented with the high normative statements rated their relationship satisfaction as lower although this correlation was not statistically significant (p = 0.231). Additional research is warranted, as increasing sample sizes and controlling for self-esteem prior to participation might isolate and highlight this relationship.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.


Received from ProQuest

Rights holder

Tina Rene Negley

File size

71 p.

File format





Quantitative psychology and psychometrics