Factors predicting satisfaction judgments: A comparative examination


Emmons, R. A., & Diener, E. (1985). Factors predicting satisfaction judgments: A comparative examination. Social Indicators Research, 16(2), 157-167.


A number of psychological processes (e.g. social comparison, aspirations) may explain why people differ in their satisfaction with various life domains. This study compared the impact of a number of such processes on satisfaction judgments in a sample of 149 college students. Social comparison and positive affect were strong predictors of satisfaction across most domains. Objective conditions and aspirations were predictive of satisfaction in few domains. The relevance of Multiple Discrepancies Theory (Michalos, 1983) for the present findings is discussed. Limitations of the present study are noted and suggestions for future research are offered. Researchers need to focus on the reasons underlying the predictability of different domains from different processes.

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