Jessie Smith

Doctor of Clinical Psychology, (Psychology)
Study Completed: 2019
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
An Examination of the Relationships between Activity Participation, Social Relations, and Meaning in Life among Older Adults in Aotearoa New Zealand

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

As the population ages, understanding and maintaining well-being in older adulthood is increasingly important. Experiencing a sense of meaning in life is associated with well-being among older adults. However, little research has examined specific life roles and activities that may contribute to a sense of meaningfulness among older adults. Ms Smith examined the relationships between meaning in life and various life roles in a sample of older adults in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also examined the relationship between health and meaning in life among this population and found that a sense of meaning in life was associated with better psychological health but not physical health. The results indicated that volunteering and other roles, which present opportunities to provide support for others, may be particularly effective for enhancing a sense of meaning in life among older adults.

Professor Fiona Alpass
Associate Professor Joanne Taylor

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