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Wellnesss among Turkish university students : investigating the construct and testing the effectiveness of an art-enriched wellness program

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2006
Duran (Oğuz), Nagihan
This study consists of two phases for the purpose of investigating (a) the construct of wellness and its relationships with self-esteem, physical symptoms, art self-concept, and gender, and (b) the effect of Art-Enriched Wellness Program (AWP) on improving wellness levelof Middle East Technical University (METU) students. In the first phase of the study, four questionnaires, namely Wellness Inventory, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Physical Symptom Checklist, and Art Self-Concept Scale were administered to 629 METU students (297 male, 300 female, 32 indicated no gender). The results of explanatory and confirmatory factor analysis yielded a 30 items scale with 4 factors; cognitive-emotional wellness (CEW), relational wellness (RW), life-goal (LG), and physical wellness (PW). The results of five separate multiple linear regression analyses revealed that all the suggested independent variables, i. e., self-esteem, gender, physical symptoms and art self-concept were the predictors of the total wellness scores. As for the subscores, significant predictors appeared as; self-esteem and physical symptom for the CEW scores; gender, self-esteem and art-self-concept for the RW scores; self-esteem and art-self concept for the LG scores; and physical symptom, gender, and self-esteem for the PW scores. In the second phase of the study, for the purpose of testing the effectiveness of Art-enriched Wellness Program (AWP) developed by the researcher, an experimental design with one treatment and one non-treatment control group and four measurements (pre, post, and two follow-ups with two-week and four-month intervals) was used with a sample of 16 participants ( N = 6 for the treatment group, 3 females and 3 males; N = 10 for the non-treatment control group, 8 females and 2 males). The experimental group participated in 20 hours- 8 week AWP (each session was 2.5 hours), while the non-treatment control group received no treatment during that time. Results of a series of Mann Whitney U tests revealed that AWP was effective in increasing total wellness scores of the experimental group subjects both in post-test and in follow-up 1 measures. It was also effective in increasing CEW scores of experimental group subjects in the post-test and follow-up 1, and in increasing LG scores of them in follow-up 1.