Date of Conferral







Sandra Caramela-Miller


Enhancing Quality of Life:

The Effects of Positive Cognitions


Claudine Antoniette Gerald

M.S., Walden University, 2009

B.S., Florida Atlantic University, 2002

Dissertation Submitted in Partial Fulfillment

of the Requirements for the Degree of

Doctor of Philosophy

General Psychology

Walden University

August 2015

The purpose of this study was to test the nature of the relationship among cognitive factors to determine quality of life in a sample of 180 adult internet users. Theories of the positive psychology paradigm, salutogenesis, dynamic equilibrium model, family systems, and family resilience theories were the bases for examining the relative significance of the cognitive factors, positive illusions, optimism, perception of control, meaning in life, resilience, and sense of coherence to the development of quality of life. Factor analysis revealed the order of significance of these variables from the most influential to least influential: sense of coherence, meaning in life, positive illusions, perception of control, resilience, and optimism. Stepwise multiple regression analysis indicated that positive illusions have a negative influence on quality of life β = -0.198, t = -2.36, F = 5.58, p = 0.02. Standard multiple regression analysis indicated that these cognitive factors do not significantly contribute to quality of life when grouped together. These findings corroborate current research that cognitive factors do not work alone in enhancing quality of life and there must be a balance along factors on other levels, such as psychological, physiological, behavioral, and sociocultural to enhance quality of life. Social change may be influenced by this study's unique and exclusive emphasis on the effects of cognitive factors, demonstrating the relative significance of these cognitive factors, individually and combined, for the promotion of quality of life. This study has filled two research gaps because positive cognitions had not been studied together and the association between positive illusions and the known quality of life promoting cognitive factors needed clarification.

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