Student Subjective Wellbeing as a Predictor of Adolescent Problem Behaviors: a Comparison of First-Order and Second-Order Factor Effects

Arslan G., Renshaw T. L.

CHILD INDICATORS RESEARCH, vol.11, no.2, pp.507-521, 2018 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12187-017-9444-0
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.507-521
  • Süleyman Demirel University Affiliated: Yes


The present study investigated the predictive validity of two competing measurement models underlying the Student Subjective Wellbeing Questionnaire (SSWQ)-first-order and second-order-relative to several specific classes of adolescent problem behaviors: antisocial behavior, alcohol use, tobacco use, suicidal tendencies, nutrition habits, and school dropout. Analyses conducted with a sample or urban high-school students in Turkey (Grades 9-12, N = 374) demonstrated that the SSWQ's first-order measurement model, which consisted of four fully-correlated factors (i.e., joy of learning, school connectedness, academic efficacy, and educational purpose), and second-order measurement model, which structured these four first-order factors as indicators of one second-order factor (i.e., student covitality), both indicated good data-model fit and strong internal reliability with the present sample. Additionally, results showed that both measurement models had substantive and relatively similar predictive power, characterized by moderate to large effect sizes, for accounting for the variance in all of the problem behaviors of interest. Findings regarding the predictive validity of the first-order measurement model further indicated that the predictive power of this model was primarily limited to two of the four students subjective wellbeing factors: academic efficacy and educational purpose. Implications for theory, practice, and future research are discussed.