Date of Award:

1-1-1986

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Advisor/Chair:

Glen Jenson

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine if participation in a marriage enrichment program had an impact on couple's relationships in the areas of regard, empathy, congruence, dyadic adjustment and self esteem. Seven independent variables were also analyzed to see if they had any impact on the five outcome measures. A survey was given at four different time periods (pretest, immediately before the enrichment experience; posttest, immediately after the enrichment experience; three months following; and six months following the enrichment experience) to determine if change did occur and if it was maintained over time. There was no control group and the experimenta l group had an N of 36 , or 18 couples .

The results showed a significant increase in regard , empathy, congruence, and dyadic adjustment from pretest to posttest. Self esteem increased slightly but not 8t a significant level. From posttest to the three-month followup, regard, empathy, congruence and dyadic adjustment declined significantly and self-esteem increased significantly. From the three-month followup to the six-month followup there was no significant difference indicating a stablizing effect. A~e and dyadic adjustment were significantly related. The older the coup le, the better the mari tal adjustment. (Number of child ren approached significance in explaining level of re~Sar d .) This relationship was negati ve , meaning the l ower the number of the children the higher the level of rega rd. None of the other independent variables had any impact on the outcome measures. Although the mean scores for the five outcome measures signif icantly declined from posttest to six- month followup, they were still hi gher t han pretest mean scores .

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