Environmental perceptions, stress levels, and demographic conditions affecting black, hispanic, and white graduate students


Material Information

Environmental perceptions, stress levels, and demographic conditions affecting black, hispanic, and white graduate students
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ix, 194 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Elie, Gerri Moore, 1934-
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Subjects / Keywords:
Graduate students -- Psychology -- Florida   ( lcsh )
College environment -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Stress (Psychology)   ( lcsh )
Minorities -- Psychology -- Florida   ( lcsh )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )


Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 1989.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 180-191).
Statement of Responsibility:
by Gerri Moore Elie.
General Note:
General Note:

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 21992358
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Full Text







Life for me ain't been no crystal stair .
--Langston Hughes

To my mother, Lucille Crump Moore, who taught me

two valuable lessons at a very young age .

"the just shall live by faith" and "to those whom

much is given, much is required". In all my ways,

I have acknowledged Christ and he has directed my



The completion of this doctoral program would not have

been possible without the assistance of a cadre of very

special people who deserve recognition for helping make this

dream a reality.

The author extends to Dr. Woodrow M. Parker, committee

chairman, and Dr. Roderick J. McDavis, former chairman,

mentor and friend, heartfelt gratitude for patience, under-

standing, and encouragement which provided a constant source

of motivation throughout the dissertation process.

Sincere thanks to committee members, Dr. Carolyn M.

Tucker, Dr. Gerardo Gonzalez, and Dr. Art Sandeen for the

many timely suggestions and words of support afforded the

author during the course of this study.

This study could not have been completed without the

financial assistance of the McKnight Programs in Higher

Education and the moral support of Dr. Israel Tribble and

the staff of the Florida Endowment Fund.

Special thanks are extended to Sybil Stephens and Laura

Price for assistance in the analysis of the data and to Gail

Luparello for efficiency and care in typing the manuscript

and final drafts. Thanks also go to Dorothy Long for

assistance in editing the rough drafts, and to Shirley

Smith, Ed Smith, and Vickie Sykes for preparing the mater-

ials for mailing.

Finally, sincere appreciation is extended to the au-

thor's parents, children, sisters, and Aunt Lydia for faith

and encouragement. Thanks also to the many church members

and friends who were always there to listen or lend a hand

when needed.



ACKNOWLEDGMENTS....................... ........... iv

ABSTRACT.......................................... viii


I INTRODUCTION.................................. 1

Statement of the Problem........................ 1
Purpose of the Study ........................... 11
Need for the Study.............................. 12
Significance of the Study....................... 17
Definition of Terms........................... 19
Organization of the Study....................... 23

II REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE........................ 25

Overview ........ ........ ..... ..... ...... 25
Theoretical Models.............................. 26
Measurement Techniques......................... 35
Characteristics of College Environments.......... 37
College and University Environment Scales....... 42
Characteristics of Graduate Students............. 58
Graduate Student Satisfaction.................... 64
Minority Student Environment..................... 72
Theoretical Models of Stress.................... 80
Stress and Environmental Interaction............ 83
Measuring Stress................................ 87
Summary... ....................................... 92

III METHODOLOGY.... ................................ 95

Research Questions............................. 95
Population and Sample.......................... 96
Procedure.... ..................... 101
Instruments ................................... 103
Demographic Questionnaire................... 103
College And University Environment Scales.... 103
Data Collection................................ 107
Data Analyses.................................. 108
Limitations of the Study........................ 110

IV RESULTS AND DISCUSSION..........................

Results......................................... 112
Graduate Student Participants................... 114
Black, Hispanic, and White Graduate Students'
Perceptions of Their Graduate School
Environments.................................. 116
Stress Experienced by Black, Hispanic,
and White Graduate Students................... 117

Relationship Between Environmental Perceptions
and Stress Levels of Black, Hispanic, and
White Graduate Students....................... 124
The Relationship Between Demographic Variables
and Graduate Students' Perceptions of Their
Graduate School Environments.................. 131
The Relationship Between Demographic Variables
and Levels of Stress Experienced by Graduate
Students ...................................... 135
Discussion...................................... 142
Summary.......................................... 155

RECOMMENDATIONS....... ......................... 158

Summary .... ....... ......... .............. 158
Conclusions ............... .................... 162
Implications............................... .... 165
Recommendations for Future Research............. 166


A DEMOGRAPHIC QUESTIONNAIRE......................... 170


C THE STRAIN QUESTIONNAIRE.......................... 175

D COVER LETTER.................................... 179

REFERENCES..................... ... ....... .... .. 180

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. .................................. 192



Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy



Gerri M. Elie

December 1989

Chairman: Dr. Woodrow M. Parker
Major Department: Counselor Education

The purpose of this study was to investigate differ-

ences in environmental perceptions, stress levels, and demo-

graphic conditions affecting black, Hispanic, and white

graduate students. Also examined was the relationship

between environmental perceptions and stress levels.

The population consisted of 181 black, 135 Hispanic,

and 215 white full-time graduate students from the Univer-

sity of Florida and the University of South Florida. A

Graduate Environment Survey, the Strain Questionnaire, and a

demographic survey were mailed to 751 graduate students

during spring, 1989.

ANOVAS with repeated measures for six scales of the

environment variable revealed no significant differences in

environmental perceptions among the ethnic groups. ANOVAS,


using four repeated measures, revealed significant differ-

ences in the stress levels of black and Hispanic graduate

students with Hispanic students reporting significantly

higher levels of stress than black graduate students. White

students fell between black and Hispanic graduate students.

A Pearson correlation revealed no relationship between

environmental perception scores and stress level scores for

black and Hispanic graduate students. However, the rela-

tionship was significant for white graduate students at the

University of Florida.

Regression analyses revealed that the type of graduate

school (urban vs. college town) was significant for predict-

ing the environmental perceptions of black graduate stu-

dents, while age was significant for predicting the percep-

tions of Hispanic graduate students. Marital status, lei-

sure, and type of graduate school were significant variables

for predicting the stress levels of black graduate students;

children were significant for predicting stress for Hispanic

graduate students, while gender was significant in predict-

ing stress for white graduate students.

This study is expected to add to the literature on

graduate student perceptions and assist in the development

of improved methods for detecting and characterizing en-

vironmental stressors.


Statement of the Problem

Graduate education in the United States began in 1876

when the Johns Hopkins Graduate School was established.

During its more than 100 years of existence, according to

Hartnett and Katz (1977), graduate education in America has

experienced good times and bad times. Until recent years,

the times have been good. During the 1970s, graduate

education passed the 100-year mark. At this point, it

became clear that graduate institutions in the United States

would have to change in order to avoid the risk of becoming

antique and diminishing earlier educational accomplishments.

Hartnett and Katz (1977) stated that during the 1970s gradu-

ate schools faced the problems of fewer students entering

graduate school, less monetary support from governmental

sources, a decline in the market for students with graduate

degrees, and a significant decrease in the number of

minority students completing graduate degree programs.

Reports concerning the problems of graduate education

have received considerable attention within the American

graduate school community (Breneman, 1975; Clark, 1976;

Heiss, 1970). However, in spite of the increased attention


American graduate education has received in reports and

research studies, the graduate student population has

received little attention in these studies.

The graduate school experience for many students can

best be characterized by the word "ambiguity" (Winston,

1973). Most graduate students bring to university

environments certain middle-class values but lack the income

to enjoy middle-class lifestyles. Graduate students are

among the last persons in America to observe the Protestant

ethic by foregoing income and status now in the hope of

obtaining either or both later in life. Most graduate

students are not prepared for the difficulties that lie

ahead (Altbach, 1970).

In spite of gains made in graduate education in the

past two decades, Hartnett and Katz (1977) noted that upon

entry, graduate students still had far less information

about their graduate departments than the departments had

about the students. Many graduate students' experiences

within departments are major sources of dissatisfaction.

These departments had not lived up to the descriptions given

by either college recruiters or the graduate school

catalogs. Students indicated that more information about

the graduate schools could have prevented them from making

poor decisions and selecting unsuitable departments or areas

of specialization. Though graduate departments select

prospective students on specific quantitative and

qualitative criteria, graduate students' choices of

institutions are often based on scant information about the

important characteristics and features of the departments

that subsequently are very important to their performance

and satisfaction in graduate school.

Relationships with faculty members are regarded by most

graduate students as the most important aspect of their

graduate experience. Hartnett and Katz (1977), however,

found that many graduate students reported relationships

with faculty members as the single most disappointing aspect

of their graduate experience. Academic and social inter-

action, thought to be crucial to the optimal development of

productive scholars and scientists, were often neglected by

graduate faculty and staff. Other conditions overlooked

were the cultivation of the imaginative capacity, encour-

agement of cooperative inquiry, undue allegiance to specific

"schools of thought," and the security needed for each

graduate student's expectations to be realized.

Reasons cited for graduate schools' inability to

develop productive scholars include the amount of concen-

trated time graduate schools spend on research and the lack

of concern for student development among faculty members.

Hartnett and Katz (1977) suggested that motivation and "time

on tasks" were taken for granted with graduate students more

than with undergraduates. Thus, there was no compelling

need to pay much attention to the academic and social


development of graduate students. Whatever the reasons, the

fact remains that little attention has been given to the

processes by which graduate students become scholars and

scientists or to the environmental factors which tend to

help or hinder these processes.

While graduate students are generally regarded as hardy

individuals not particularly vulnerable to stress-related

emotional disorders, there is convincing evidence to the

contrary. Halleck (1976) cited severe anxiety, role

confusion, and alienation as problems for graduate students.

Several of the reasons Halleck (1976) presented for graduate

students' problems were insufficient feedback from profes-

sors regarding the students' work, insufficient opportunity

for students to work and think with professors, lack of

sufficient financial resources, and an environment which

allowed too little time for working or socializing with

fellow graduate students. Creager (1971) and Baird (1969)

found competition among graduate students to be another

major source of stress. The competitive factor is consi-

dered more closely related to graduate student tension than

either financial or academic difficulties.

Although stress is viewed as an intrinsic part of being

human, Gunnings (1982) characterized the stress experienced

by students as being related to the interacting factors of

their individual personalities and their environment.

Therefore, each student's response to stress can be assessed

as a matter of the relationship between the intrinsic make-

up of the student and that student's structural environment.

Some sources of stress are intrinsic to individuals, others

are found in the individual's structural environment.

Stress often exists in the interaction between individual

and environmental factors.

Lazarus and Opton (1966) discovered reaction patterns

to the same stressors varied greatly from one individual to

another. Patterns relating to stress were determined by the

characteristics of the personality of each individual.

Stressful situations were found to cause some students to

perform feats otherwise unattainable. In the same stressful

situations, however, other students became ineffective or

immobilized. The individuality of stress manifests itself

through a number of interrelated internal and external

factors that make each person's response unique. Gunnings

(1982) postulated that stress had ingredients of cultural,

personal, and situational nature. The conclusion suggested

that a mediation must take place between the personal

variables of the students and the institution's variables if

students' responses to stress are to be positive.

Married students engaged in graduate study are an

important subset of the total graduate school population.

However, the family unit is subjected to many stressors when

either a husband or wife decides to enter graduate studies.

These problems are multifaceted because the stressors facing

the student often affect the family as well (McLaughlin,

1985). The combination of financial constraints and

academic factors become a significant source of tension for

the family unit.

The demands of graduate school exceed those of a

typical 8-hour work day (Halleck, 1976). Academic pressures

often usurp time set aside for family activities and

involvement. Lack of satisfaction with leisure pursuits has

been cited as one of the major problems of both married and

single graduate students (Clifford, 1977). It is becoming

increasingly apparent that leisure patterns cannot be con-

sidered in isolation from the broader context of peoples


The presence of children seems to present additional

pressures and stress for the married student. Thus, areas

of concern for married students include time constraints,

role conflict, restricted social life, a lack of leisure

time and parenting responsibilities (Gruver & Labadie,

1975). Given the constraints of the academic environment on

family life and leisure activities, efforts must be made to

improve the quality of graduate schools in these important

areas of concern.

Gunnings (1982) discovered minority students faced

additional stressors in the form of pressures, and

psycho-social adjustment problems which were manifested by

feelings of guilt, ostracism, loneliness, and the


expectations of high levels of achievement while functioning

in a "competitively alien environment." Information about

minority student experiences became important in light of

the findings by Allen (1981), who cited retention of

minority students in graduate and professional schools as

one of the most pressing concerns of college educators and

administrators in the 1980s. During this decade, enrollment

data reveal that four of every five minority students are

enrolled in traditionally white colleges and universities.

At first glance, this dramatic reversal in minority student

enrollment was a reason for celebration. Garza and Nelson

(1973), Hunt (1975), and Olivar (1982), however, found that

it had become increasingly difficult for minority students

to adjust to campus life at traditionally white colleges and

universities. Parker and Scott (1985) indicated that ethni-

cally different students have not felt welcome on white

campuses. Instead, minority students felt like unwanted

guests in a strange land.

In a preliminary report Allen (1981) summarized the

responses of over 400 black graduate and professional

students on majority white campuses. These findings

suggested that the situation for black students in graduate

and higher education were less than optimal. On measures of

academic performance, social adjustment, campus race

relations, and interactions with faculty, student responses

were ambivalent and usually negative. Allen (1981)

confirmed that one-third to one-half of all black students

studying at predominately white colleges left without

receiving degrees.

Blackwell (1975) reported that approximately 48,000

doctor of philosophy degrees were produced each year, yet

there was a critical shortage of blacks with doctorates. In

1973, only 976 blacks received doctorates out of a total of

33,727 awarded that year. This included 56 non-U.S. citizen

immigrants and 160 non-U.S. citizens. This extreme under-

representation of blacks existed in spite of increasing

efforts to assist more blacks in earning doctorates. By

comparison, Pruitt and Isaac (1985) reported minorities with

the best chance of completing graduate study were either

graduates of affluent, selective institutions or graduates

of a group of traditionally successful black institutions.

Some of the black institutions cited in this study for their

superior record in producing black graduate students were

Howard University, Southern University, Florida A&M Univer-

sity, Tuskegee Institute, Hampton Institute, Virginia State

University, and North Carolina Central University.

Gibbs (1975) found that black students on predominately

white campuses experienced a wider range of problems than

their white counterparts. Farver, Sedlacek and Brooks

(1975) also learned black students suffered more

difficulties adjusting to their predominately all-white

campuses than non-black students. Patterson, Sedlacek and


Perry (1984), however, learned that the experiences of black

students also were encountered by members of other minority

groups. It was concluded that not enough research had been

conducted to compare the experiences and perceptions of

black students to other minority students.

Hispanic students and faculty have been grossly under-

represented in American higher education. Cortese and

Duncan (1982), and Schlef (1983) attributed the under-

representation of Hispanic students and faculty to social

and institutional discriminatory practices. Other authors

indicated that the overall "lower quality of life" exper-

ienced by Hispanic students was evidenced by their high

attrition rate, (Higher Education Institute, 1982; Ramirez &

Soriano, 1981), their difficulties in coping with mental

stress (Mendoza, 1983), and their perceptions of more campus

problems than non-Hispanic students (Jacobs, 1981).

Minatoya and Sedlacek (1984) indicated that studies of

student perceptions have usually focused on the observations

and attitudes of black or white students. Hispanics, how-

ever, now represent the second largest minority group in the

United States and are currently found in larger numbers than

blacks on many college campuses. It has become a challenge

of the 1980s to prepare black, Hispanic, and white students

to function in diverse college and university environments.

It is imperative, therefore, to gain information on how

these different groups perceive their graduate school

environments in order to better meet this challenge.

Chickering (1969) suggested a major growth need for all

college students involved the development of an increased

tolerance and respect for individuals with different back-

grounds, habits, and values. Amir (1969) stated that to

produce positive change between racial groups, the inter-

action must occur under relatively favorable conditions;

otherwise the results would be negative. Student affairs

professionals in higher education, practitioners, and

faculty have not served as efficient architects in designing

campus environments in the past. Both undergraduate and

graduate environments should be designed to ensure respect

for the human dignity of all students while allowing them to

flourish and grow. Such environments would be stimulating,

nurturing and challenging (Hughes, 1988). These environ-

ments would take into consideration the experiences of

students while attending classes or student needs for

exploring outside activities. While student affairs

divisions typically devote their greatest resources and

interests to undergraduate students, Hughes (1988) indicated

that graduate students deserve the same amount of effort and


Hartnett and Katz (1977) conducted a review of the

literature concerning the basic format of graduate education

over the past three decades. The study gathered information


about each graduate school's physical facilities and social

environments. Ironically, the very institution charged with

the major responsibility for opening new systems and expand-

ing known ones did not present itself as a viable model.

While the trend toward racial and cultural diversity and

reallocation of resources continued, those seeking accurate

data on college characteristics were still handicapped by a

dearth of inaccurate comparative data. Entering graduate

students still had no reliable source of information avail-

able for assessing the perceptions of former students toward

particular graduate schools or departments. Each succeeding

graduate class was expected to encounter the same problems

and environmental stressors as the generation which it


Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was to investigate the

environmental perceptions, stress levels, and demographic

conditions affecting black, Hispanic, and white graduate

students. The demographic variables examined in this study

were age, gender, marital status, number of semesters in

graduate school and time spent on leisure activities.

Specifically, the researcher examined the correlation

between levels of stress and the environmental perceptions

of a select group of black, Hispanic, and white students

located in two different types of graduate school

environments (urban, regional, commuter-type college vs.

small town, residential-type campus).

Need for the Study

Educational psychologists have made many attempts to

measure environments. Henry Murray (1938) developed a

theory of personality which stressed the need to view

behavior as an outcome of the relationship between the

people and their environment. Murray's need-press theory

corrected an earlier omission in psychological theory which

had not included both persons and their environment in a

single theory. As an extension of this theory, Stern (1970)

developed a model of environmental press which examined the

capacity of the environment to enhance or block the personal

development of college students. Stem's primary interest

was in testing the need-press theoretical framework, rather

than in attempting to determine the dimensions of the

environmental climate as perceived by the students.

Pace (1963) and Astin and Holland (1961) developed

instruments and questionnaires to measure students' impres-

sions of their college environments. The theoretical con-

cept in these two instruments varied somewhat. While Pace's

work was a modification of Stern's environmental press,

Astin and Holland came closer to measuring the organiza-

tional climate. All three investigators, however, focused

on undergraduate rather than graduate or professional

schools in their studies.

Murray's (1938) need-press theory has been applied to

the study of person-environment fit models in the work place

and in educational institutions. The person-environment fit

model predicts congruence between the students and the

social environments in which they live and work. In these

studies, efforts have been made to determine whether person-

environment congruence yields satisfaction and success.

Proponents of this model suggested that the difference

between perceived and desired influence over one's work

environment was an important determinant of motivation and

performance. There still exists, however, a serious void in

the literature which describes the perceptions and stressors

of college students and their environments. There is a

larger omission of literature describing graduate student

stress and perceptions. While person-environment fit models

have been used to explain a large number of factors affect-

ing success in college, the models have been rarely exam-

ined. Rubio and Lubin (1986) suggested that research is

needed to examine the models as they relate to college


Sandeen (1976) stated there was a need to know more

about the "new students" in diverse student populations.

Some of these groups included transfer students, interna-

tional students, black and Hispanic students, and women.

Sandeen confirmed the diversity existing within student

bodies and among different institutions, colleges, and

universities. It would appear that institutions of higher

education need to become more knowledgeable about these

students' perceptions, problems, and attitudes toward their

college environments if the situation is to improve.

Although most of the research on American college and

university campuses has been conducted by graduate faculty

or graduate assistants, there is a scarcity of research

available regarding graduate students and their experiences

while pursuing higher level degrees. Considering the fact

that over 1,000,000 graduate students are enrolled in insti-

tutions of higher education in the United States, informa-

tion concerning the ways in which graduate students perceive

and evaluate the quality of their experiences within the

graduate milieu is an educational imperative.

In addition to devoting attention and resources to the

intellectual needs of graduate students, graduate faculty

members must become aware of the developmental and situa-

tional ambiguities that exist in the lives of graduate

students. Graduate students are compelled to resolve many

school-related problems as they strive to establish them-

selves as adults. In most instances, graduate faculty

members seem particularly oblivious to graduate students'

problems and may, in some cases, contribute to these

problems. A need exists, therefore, for communicating

information regarding the environmental needs and problems

of graduate students to graduate faculty members.

There is a need to identify the stressors present

within the graduate school environment and to determine how

students experience and adjust to stressful situations. In

light of the current data linking stress arousal to human

disease and dysfunction, a need exists to examine the con-

cept of stress as it applies to the physical and emotional

health of college students (Lloyd, 1980). College profes-

sionals are in need of more reliable measures of the dif-

ferent types of stressors experienced by married graduate

students in order to develop more effective methods of

stress reduction in family life on campus. More time should

be spent assessing the need for leisure time and meaningful

participatory activities for all graduate students.

There is now a great deal of evidence to confirm in-

creased minority attendance in institutions of higher edu-

cation throughout the United States. Patterson, Sedlacek

and Perry (1984) indicate, however, that little is known

about the involvement or participation of ethnically dif-

ferent students within the university environment. The

current problems concerning retention of minority students

in both undergraduate and graduate institutions suggest that

there is a need for increased knowledge about minority popu-

lations and their perceptions and adjustments to tradition-

ally all white college campus environments.

While studies have been conducted concerning black

undergraduate students attending white colleges and univer-

sities, little information is available regarding black

graduate students' experiences on these campuses. The data

that are available appear to contain only information on

admission requirements or the number of degrees awarded.

Carrington and Sedlacek (1977) found that although a number

of institutions have made demonstrable efforts to recruit

and enroll minority students, only half of the institutions

surveyed had developed programs designed to assess or meet

the environmental needs of these students after enrollment.

Some researchers have conducted studies examining the

special needs and concerns of Hispanic students (Perry &

Tucker, 1981), and the perceptions of Hispanic students in a

community college setting (de Armas & McDavis, 1981). Other

studies have recommended that non-Hispanic student attitudes

toward Hispanic students should be measured in an effort to

help eliminate student prejudices. There have been, how-

ever, no studies conducted to measure Hispanic students'

perceptions of their graduate school environments or to

determine if stress is a major factor within these environ-


Perhaps the most important need of all graduate stu-

dents, regardless of ethnic background or marital status, is

the need for informed choice. The information about

graduate programs should extend beyond the facts that are


presently available to entering graduate students. There is

a need to include information about the social-psychological

characteristics of graduate environments, the nature and

quality of student relations with faculty, and the degree of

concern and attention to student problems.

The need exists for colleges and graduate schools to

discover better ways of characterizing their differences.

The institutions should particularly identify those differ-

ences related to the programs proposed for students with

emphases on how students of different ethnic and racial

backgrounds have responded to these institutional differ-

ences. Moos (1979) stated that administrators, faculty, and

the student services professionals of most universities have

not addressed the need to describe themselves accurately to

prospective students or to assess the possible effect of

institutional diversity on the various ethnic students

represented within their graduate school populations.

Significance of the Study

The data obtained through this study has implications

for several areas of student personnel services in higher

education. The environmental-press theory of personality

developed by Murray (1938) was examined to determine the

relationship between need and press as each related to the

variables of student needs and the environmental press

operating within the graduate school environments. The

results of the study will contribute to the student per-

sonnel literature presently available on environment-fit

models, which are rarely examined at the graduate school

level. This investigation also has added to the information

on the adjustment of different ethnic groups to their urban

and suburban graduate school environments.

The results of the study provide data needed to conduct

further research in the study of other types of graduate

school environment models as they relate to the stress,

adjustment, satisfaction, retention, or academic success of

culturally different graduate school students. Data

gathered from the study has added to the body of literature

presently available for identifying the sources, types, and

levels of stress experienced within graduate school


The results of the study will assist graduate schools

in educating academic departments in the development of

materials and catalogs that provide more accurate descrip-

tions of the graduate school environments. Students can be

educated to become more selective observers of graduate

school departments and environment models in relation to the

effects that different models have on successful academic

and psycho-social development.

Definition of Terms

A number of terms will be used throughout this study

which require further definition and elaboration. A working

definition is presented for these terms in relation to spe-

cific meanings implied within the study.

Alienation refers to the conditions under which a

certain person or group of persons become identified as

outsiders. Alienation also is defined as a state of

isolation or estrangement between one's self and the

objective environment (Halleck, 1976).

Alien environment is an environment which has

characteristics or allegiance that are foreign to a

particular segment of the society. Such an environment is

unfamiliar or indifferent to some of it's inhabitants; a

system that consists of conditions that are unusual or

unnatural for particular individuals or groups (Gunnings,


Ambiguity is a condition or circumstance that is sus-

ceptible to multiple interpretations, characterized by

doubtful or uncertain circumstances and lacking in clarity

or meaning. Information may be hidden in difficult or

mysterious forms, purposely intended to discourage indi-

viduals from gaining clearer understanding of important

materials or situations (Winston, 1973).

Ambivalence refers to the existence of mutually

conflicting feelings or thoughts (such as love and hate)

which cause conflicts in one's feelings toward other

persons, ideas, or situations. A situation affecting an

individual's ability to think rationally and make important

decisions affecting their present and future status is an

ambivalent state (Allen, 1981).

College adjustment is the relationship found in the

degree of fit between the student and the academic and

social characteristics of the college. A particular fit may

produce either satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the

college environment (Stupp, 1982).

College environment consists of the college community

which is regarded as a system of pressures and policies.

These policies are intended to influence the development of

students toward attainment of institutional objectives. The

environment refers also to the distinctive atmosphere of a

college, and the differences between colleges that can be

attributed to the ways in which systems are organized.

There may exist, also, subtle differences in rules,

classroom climates, patterns of personal and social

activity, and other media through which the behavior of

individual students is shaped (Stern, 1970).

Environmental stimuli is any behavior, event, or

characteristic of an institution capable of changing a

student's sensory input. The existence or occurrence of

environmental stimuli can be confirmed by independent

observation (Astin, 1968).

Life stages refers to the cumulative and continuous

process of physical, psychological, and social development

that can be divided into an orderly series of stages. Each

stage is characterized by certain developmental tasks

requiring the individual to alter present behavior and

master new meanings in order to progress successfully to the

next stage. The college experience normally includes the

stages of sorting out and establishing one's own identity

from among a confusing array of possible roles (Erikson,


Minority group is the smaller in number of two groups

forming a whole. A minority also may be defined as a group

of persons numbering less than half of the total, such as a

racial, religious, political or national group regarded as

different from the larger group of which it is an integral

part (Morris, 1980).

Need-Press Environment consists of needs and presses

that are complimentary but not necessarily reciprocal

concepts. While need involves the maximization of oppor-

tunities for establishing close, reciprocal associations

with others, the press may be a place in which such

opportunities are optimized. Environmental press, like

need, may be defined as a taxonomic classification of

characteristic behaviors manifested by aggregates of

individuals in their mutual interpersonal transactions

(Stern, 1970).

Ostracism is the temporary or permanent banishment,

representing total exclusion from a group. Ostracism may

involve ignoring or disgracing someone who makes attempts at

interaction or integration by evoking feelings of loneliness

and guilt. Ostracism can be the result of social adjustment

problems faced by minority students because of their smaller

numbers and higher visibility (Gunnings, 1982).

Perception refers to the enlightenment produced by

careful observation or detection through the senses.

Perception is the result of achieving understanding and

seeing clearly by the use of one's own mind (Sandeen, 1976).

Person-environment fit is the theory that predicts

congruence between the person and the social environment

resulting in overall satisfaction for the individual.

Person-environment fit predicts certain effects of inter-

action among personal characteristics, environmental

stimuli, individual screening tendencies, and locus of

control. The degree to which students integrate with other

persons and situations within the college defines their

environmental fit (Rubio & Lubin, 1986).

Psycho-social adjustment is the degree of adjustment

and interaction between each individual's personality and

their psychological and social environment. The type and

level of adjustment is dependent upon each individual's

sensibilities, perceptions, and responses to the environment

(Gunnings, 1982).

Strain consists of the psychological or physical

consequences associated with stress, often referred to as

the stress response. In this study, strain is used to refer

to physical, behavioral, or cognitive symptoms elicited by

environmental demands upon the individual (Lefebvre &

Sandford, 1985).

Stress is a relationship between the person and the

environment that is appraised by people as taxing or ex-

ceeding their resources, and endangering their well-being

(Lazarus & Folkman, 1984, p. 19).

Stressors refer to those psycho-biological stimuli

which work together with psycho-social factors to produce a

stress response that is recognized by defined cognitive and

physical changes within the individual (Selye, 1980).

Organization of the Study

The remainder of this study is organized into four

chapters. Chapter II contains a theoretical framework and

review of the literature related to perceptions of graduate

school environments and stress, specifically perceptions and

problems experienced by black, Hispanic and white graduate

students within their academic environments. Research

questions, a description of the population and sample,

instruments used, data collection procedures, analyses of

the data, and the limitations of the study are described in

Chapter III. The results and a discussion of the results of


this study are presented in Chapter IV. The conclusions,

implications of the study, summary and recommendations for

future research are discussed in Chapter V.


Chapter II includes a comprehensive overview of the

characteristics of graduate students and presents theories

and research literature important to the study of college

and graduate school environments. A review of the current

literature relevant to the perceptions, experiences, atti-

tudes, and stresses of black, Hispanic, and white students

within the college and graduate school environments also is

included in this chapter.


American higher education includes a wide diversity of

institutions. These institutions are community colleges,

liberal arts colleges, technical institutes, black colleges,

universities, professional schools, research institutes, and

doctoral-granting comprehensive "multiversities." Students

in these institutions represent all economic levels of soci-

ety, a wide range of academic abilities and motivation, and

a diversity of academic and professional goals (Sandeen,

1976). In the supreme court decision of 1954, the United

States made the most dramatic commitment of any nation to

the goal of providing equal access to higher education for


its citizens (Kauper, 1954). Institutional diversity is

more than a cliche as attested to by the uneven distribution

of funds and available resources among America's 2,200 col-

leges and universities. While the facts suggest that col-

lege environments differed greatly in quality and character,

Astin (1968) indicated that college researchers experienced

great difficulty in their attempts to define environmental

differences among institutions of higher education. Resear-

chers interested in the study of college environments have

been handicapped by incomplete and inaccurate information

needed to describe college characteristics and support

research assumptions.

Theoretical Models

It has long been recognized that the college years are

difficult ones for adolescents moving into adulthood. It

was not until recently, however, that researchers began to

recognize similar needs in older college and university

students. According to Altbach (1970), graduate students

remained in a stage of prolonged adolescence because of

financial dependence and the inability to make long term

plans or important decisions affecting their lives. The key

assumption underlying this approach to the study of student

behavior was that human development was viewed as a contin-

uous, and cumulative process of physical, psychological, and

social growth divided into an orderly series of "life


stages." Williamson (1961) first offered a theory of human

development for postsecondary settings which set forth the

idea that everyone involved could master increasingly com-

plex developmental tasks, achieve self-direction, and become

independent individuals. A number of theoretical constructs

have been advanced to describe both developmental character-

istics common to all persons and tasks or behaviors that

must be mastered before one can successfully advance to the

next stage of development. Of particular importance in the

study of the developmental characteristics of college stu-

dents were the psycho-social learning theories of Erikson

(1968) and Chickering (1969). These theories have remained

valuable tools in the study of graduate students and their

adjustments to various learning environments.

Erikson (1968) theorized that human development could

be characterized by eight stages. However, only stages five

through eight specifically apply to college and university

age students. Stage five is Identity vs. Confusion (12-18

years), stage six is Intimacy vs. Isolation (young adult),

stage seven is Generativity vs. Stagnation (middle-aged

adult), and stage eight is Ego Integrity vs. Despair (older


For most students, the college experience occurs bet-

ween 17 and 25, a period that includes stages five and six.

Erikson (1968) theorized that during these stages

adolescents face the tasks of sorting out and establishing


identities from among a confusing array of roles as sons or

daughters, friends, students, and sexual beings. Through

interaction and identification with significant others of

society, individuals learn the importance of taking into

account how others think, feel, and act. One's self-concept

emerges from this interaction between self and others.

Depending on the nature of the interaction, the result-

ing self-concept can be either positive or negative. Good-

man (1972) concluded that an individual who received support

and affirmation from the environment was likely to develop a

strong and healthy self-concept. If, on the other hand, an

individual received only ridicule and criticism from the

environment, it was likely that the individual would have

great difficulty establishing and maintaining a healthy


The self-concept of the individual was found to be

self-perpetuating and self-fulfilling. Individuals who

perceived themselves as failures and who were perceived and

treated by others as failures were more likely to uncon-

sciously sabotage certain endeavors in order to maintain

that image. Likewise, individuals who perceived themselves

as capable and were treated that way by others were likely

to work even harder to maintain that image (Craig, 1976).

Individuals who viewed themselves as capable also were

better prepared to mature and adapt to new situations than

those persons who perceived themselves as failures. The


theory of self-concept was found to be important to student

attitudes, perceptions, and adjustment within the graduate


While the development of the self-concept continues

throughout life, the real crisis in identity occurs in

adolescence. Goodman (1972) contended that the emergence of

a strong, healthy, and independent self-concept allowed the

individual to move ahead and face the challenges of the

adult world with a reasonable chance of success. If for any

reason, however, an individual was unable to put all the

pieces of the personality together, or if one is convinced

of an inability to fulfill adequately the roles projected as

desirable by the family or the community, that person may

withdraw or turn toward negative group identity. Such an

individual may continue to have a fragmented personality and

remain unprepared to face the challenges of the college

experience (Kinkaid, 1969). Personality problems can intro-

duce additional stressors in the lives of graduate students

which prevent them from making satisfactory adjustments to

the academic program or the social life on campus.

Chickering (1969) considered the importance of a

healthy self-concept in the development of a set of criteria

for examining tasks that must be completed by all college

students. The seven developmental tasks or "vectors" pro-

posed by Chickering were greatly influenced by Erikson's

stages of identity and intimacy. The seven "vectors" are

(a) achieving competence, (b) managing emotions, (c) becom-

ing autonomous, (d) establishing an identity, (e) freeing

interpersonal relationships, (f) clarifying purposes and,

(g) developing integrity. A normal progression suggests

that mastery of each of these identity tasks is essential

before one can successfully move to the next.

While Chickering's structure included a broad range of

tasks, the mastery of a positive self-concept was considered

by Bradley and Stewart (1982) to be basic to healthy student

development. Any college experience that hinders the devel-

opment of a positive self-concept is viewed as a potential

stumbling block to successfully completing one's college

education. Successful mastery of the developmental tasks is

difficult for many individuals. Bradley and Stewart (1982)

contended that mastery of these tasks were even more dif-

ficult for those who were members of minority groups.

Minority group status was defined as either race, color,

culture, or physical handicap. Minority students face a

myriad of problems as they seek to develop self-concepts.

Many minority students come to college campuses already

caught up in a complex pattern of depersonalization, poor

self-concept, role confusion, and conflicts in values and

goals (Bradley & Stewart, 1982). Student personnel workers

and counselors find that these minority students are not

ready to deal with the developmental tasks they must face

during the college years. Erikson's theory suggested that

individuals who experienced role confusion would find it

difficult to move on and successfully master the tasks

associated with intimacy versus isolation. If a student

lacks a positive self-concept, according to Chickering's

theory the student would find it difficult to cope with the

remaining vectors associated with the college experience.

Recognition of the developmental perspective facing many

students could make the difference between success and

failure in college (Bradley & Stewart, 1982).

Another means of determining the successful interaction

between the student and the college is the use of person-

environment fit theory. According to Witt and Handal

(1984), person-environment fit theory predicts that con-

gruence between the person and the social environment re-

sults in satisfaction. Research results have been inconsis-

tent and beset by problems of scale construction and mixing

of theoretical orientations. Stern (1970) reported a posi-

tive relationship among congruence, satisfaction, and grade

achievement. Other studies have reported that congruence is

unrelated to achievement (Landis, 1964), or to satisfaction

(Keith, 1965). This theory was used in an attempt to deter-

mine whether person-environment congruence was related to

student attitudes, adjustment or stress within their gradu-

ate environment.

In a study by Witt and Handal (1984), it was noted that

a need existed to address the issue of empirical congruence


between person and environment variables within a consistent

theoretical framework. This study investigated whether

person-environment congruence had a stronger relationship to

satisfaction than either personality or environment alone.

The results revealed that congruency is not a better predic-

tor of satisfaction than environment or personality. En-

vironmental perceptions had the strongest relationship to

each component of satisfaction, with personality and con-

gruency significant but weaker in their relationships to

satisfaction. Evidence of these relationships was apparent

in both analyses performed by Witt and Handal (1984).

Only one university was examined in the study by Witt

and Handal (1984). It was suggested that future research

should be conducted to determine whether similar patterns of

relationships among person-environment congruence and com-

ponents of satisfaction, in other university settings such

as large versus small or, public versus private colleges or

universities. A further suggestion was that such research

be used to increase the level of satisfaction in one area or

another. Such studies were considered particularly impor-

tant to the retention of students since previous research

had shown a strong relationship between student satisfac-

tion-dissatisfaction and retention-dropout rates (Starr,

Betz & Menne, 1972).

The person-environment interactional model seems to

have considerable integrative significance for understanding


the potentially deleterious effects of life events. Accord-

ing to Rubio and Lubin (1986), the person-environment model

was even more important when coupled with the mediating

variables such as personality factors, coping skills, and

locus of control. The study of such environmental factors

as life events has been associated with depression, suicide,

and other psychiatric disorders (Lloyd, 1980). More recent-

ly, researchers have come to appreciate the complexity of

the person-environment interactional model as it relates to

the development of mediating or buffer variables such as

social support systems which help the individual adjust to

the environment.

Rubio and Lubin (1986) confirmed that there is an

interactional effect between person-environmental variables,

the moderator variables of expectedness, desirability, and

the degree of control an individual has over life events.

Their study also revealed that a significant relationship

existed among life events, depression, and general psycho-

logical stress. College students who sought help for de-

pression and psychological distress reported significantly

more life event changes immediately preceding the onset of

stress. On the other hand, the study revealed that students

who felt integrated within their college environments showed

higher rates of disclosure to parents and friends of the

same sex (Rubio & Lubin, 1986).

Tracey and Sherry (1984) found that person variables

and environment variables were typically designed using

separate conceptual schemes, and when they are examined

together there is no conceptual overlap. The major finding

of this study was that the person-environment fit variables

were superior to either the person or the environment vari-

ables alone in relation to stress and strain in the college

student subjects. The primary value of this study was the

definition and examination of person-environment fit as it

relates to college student distress. Explicit definitions

of the fit are rare in the literature. The results of this

study regarding the construct of actual discrepancy are

valuable. Tracey and Sherry (1984) suggest that this study

could be used to help student affairs professionals identify

students who are most likely to experience distress.

A correlational survey was conducted by Stupp (1982)

who studied the relationship between graduate student ad-

justment to the college environment, locus of control, and

satisfaction with college. The first hypothesis, which

predicted a relationship between adjustment as measured by

person-environment fit and dissatisfaction, was supported.

Student satisfaction or dissatisfaction were found to oper-

ate independently of the locus of control. According to

Stupp (1982), graduate student adjustment was not affected

by whether the student was internally or externally


motivated but was affected by the degree of fit between the

student and aspects of the college environment.

Measurement Techniques

In 1974, the American College Testing Program compiled

a two-volume bibliography of research which was edited by

Lenning and Munday (1974a, 1974b). The bibliography listed

more than 3,000 authors and research studies about college

students' grades, persistence, indicators of success, and

the personal characteristics associated with student suc-

cess. The volumes did not, however, include studies of

colleges and universities as organizations.

Another major compendium of research is a two-volume

analytical by Feldman and Newcomb (1969a, 1969b). The

studies in this review span a period of over 40 years from

the mid 1920s to the mid 1960s. According to Pace (1979),

this was by far the most comprehensive and scholarly assess-

ment of the evidence that colleges have influenced the

orientations and characteristics of students. The purpose

of this analysis was to discover what impact colleges as

organizations had on the development of students. The

question asked by Feldman and Newcomb (1969) was "Under what

conditions, have what kinds of students changed in what

specific ways?" The conditions were very inclusive, ranging

from the image of colleges, the characteristics of students,

the nature of the colleges' environments, institutional

size, location, and homogeneity. These and other variables

were found to interact in intricate ways.

Astin (1977) reported the results of several longitu-

dinal studies in which college students were examined at

certain intervals to determine any differences in attitudes,

beliefs, self-concept, degree aspirations, and persistence

in college and satisfaction with college. These studies,

which involved over 200,000 students from several hundred

colleges, showed many results that overlapped with earlier

studies. Astin discovered, however, a wide variety of

student characteristics and an even greater variety of

college programs. The interaction between students and the

environment and among students, faculty, and peers, were

found to provide important stimuli for change in the lives

of college students.

The College Characteristics Index (CCI) by Pace and

Stern (1958) and the College and University Environment

Scales (CUES) by Pace (1969) were originally designed to

measure the perceptions of students who had become familiar

with their college environments. Researchers soon learned,

however, that these assessment techniques also were appro-

priate for measuring the expectations of new students who

were unfamiliar with their college environments.

Richards and Seligman (1969) developed an instrument

based on a modification of Astin and Holland's (1961)

Environmental Assessment Technique (EAT). The instrument

sought to describe the graduate school environment in terms

of certain environmental characteristics. Perceptions and

expectations of graduate students were measured by Winston

(1973) using the Graduate Environment Perception Scales

(GEPS). The (GEPS) was a modification of the (CUES) items

which were rewritten to draw attention away from the univer-

sity as a whole and focus on individual departments at the

graduate level.

The Graduate and Professional School Survey was de-

signed by Baird (1974) as a part of a national study of

graduate and professional school education. The analyses

indicated that there were differences in the environments of

graduate departments especially in the areas of teaching

styles, program structure, and policies. The College and

University Environment Scales (CUES), designed by Pace

(1969), remains one of the most widely used instruments for

measuring college environments. A detailed description of

the (CUES) is provided in Chapter III.

Characteristics of College Environments

It is not sufficient to simply know that one college

differs from the other, or that a college has a particular

impact on a certain kind of student. Astin (1968) indicated

that significant environmental effects must be accounted for

by readily identifiable institutional characteristics in


order to arrive at the generalizations needed for improving

environmental theories and formulating sound educational

policy. Astin (1968) viewed the task of defining the col-

lege environment as one of identifying, measuring, and

interpreting those institutional characteristics that were

likely to have the greatest impact on student development.

The physical facilities are the most easily recogniz-

able characteristic of most institutions. The physical

environment of a college normally brings to mind classroom

buildings, residence halls, laboratories, libraries, and

other structures directly connected with student life or the

academic programs of the institution. According to Astin

(1968), college and university administrators have rarely

viewed the physical facilities as potentially important

areas of environmental stimuli. In a broader sense, the

physical environment of institutions of higher education

involve such factors as the way the facilities are arranged

with respect to each other and their general environmental

context. Astin (1968) suggested that administrators and

planners pay more attention to other potentially important

areas of the environment which included not only the in-

stitution's physical facilities, but the areas between and

immediately surrounding each facility, the proximity of one

facility to another, the college town, the larger community,

and the climate of the college's geographic region.

Astin and Holland (1961) approached the study of in-

stitutional characteristics from the point of view that

college environments included not only the physical facil-

ities, but the personal characteristics of the students, the

faculty, administrators, and staffs of the institutions. A

major portion of students' environment was further deter-

mined by the characteristics of fellow students and was,

therefore, viewed in terms of characteristics such as the

average intelligence, achievement levels, aspirations,

social interaction and the varying sizes of college student

populations. Axlerod, Freedman, Hatch, Katz, and Sandford

(1969) defined these factors as the "student culture" or the

prime educational force at work in the college environment.

Astin (1968) concluded that the college environment was

any characteristic of a college that constitutes a potential

stimulus capable of changing a student's sensory input.

Environmental influences were considered to be capable of

having either a temporary effect on a student's experiences

and behaviors or, involving changes which persisted in the

student's social and intellectual life long after college

was completed.

Comparison studies of the characteristics of graduate

and professional school environments by Follett, Andberg,

and Hendel (1982) have shown that the makeup of graduate

programs and student populations were not as diverse as

undergraduate school programs and student populations.

Graduate school students were first self-selected, then

further identified by admissions committees on the basis of

similar abilities, backgrounds, and career goals. While few

studies have examined graduate level experiences or the

teaching and learning environments of graduate institutions,

Follett, Andberg, and Hendel (1982) found that graduate

schools tended to be more structured, and graduate students

were found to have more frequent contact with the same peer

group. Intellectual and social development were the main

emphases of the undergraduate environment, while the gradu-

ate level environment was expected to provide a site where

commitment to a particular field of study and the develop-

ment of professionalism was expected to take place.

Baird (1976) indicated that there were many differences

in the teaching and learning environments of graduate

schools. When graduate school environments of similar size

and academic emphases were compared, wide disparities were

found among the teaching styles of professors, the formal

degree requirements, program structure, styles of adminis-

tration, and the views of program advisors. Although the

greatest differences were found in non-personal areas of the

programs, the areas of professor-student relationships, and

student-student relationships, both academic and personal,

differed from one department to another and from one in-

stitution to another.

The characteristics and emphases of graduate depart-

ments create unique environments for both graduate students

and faculties according to Baird (1976). Each department

had a particular main focus which seemed to permeate the

general environment of the department by influencing ad-

ministrative policy, student and faculty behavior, student

and faculty attitudes, and the implementation of specific

programs. Many differences were attributed to the variances

in views held by faculties and administrators concerning the

basic purposes of graduate education.

Graduate school environments tended to perpetuate

certain characteristics by attracting a particular type of

faculty and student population. Universities in which

greater emphasis was placed on providing personalized ap-

proaches to teaching tended to attract faculty members and

students who possessed this characteristic. Institutions

that stressed preparation for research attracted faculty and

students who were comfortable with research. It was through

a process of mutual selection that graduate departments with

particular purposes gradually became staffed by professors

who agreed with the purposes of the departments. Students

came to the departments because they were attracted to the

purposes emphasized by department, faculties and staffs.

Graduate departments also tended to select students whose

personal characteristics and goals were compatible with

departmental goals (Richards, Seligman & Jones, 1970). Some

students were found by Baird (1973) to perform better in

large graduate schools while others were found to perform

poorly. Some students seemed to relish competitive, high-

pressure environments, while others performed better in more

supportive, relaxed environments. Baird (1973) suggested

that having the ability to describe a graduate institution's

characteristics and particular demands could enable prospec-

tive graduate students to select environments which were

compatible with their personal characteristics. A lack of

accurate and readily available information about graduate

school environments suggested that graduate students en-

countered academic and social problems in adjusting to some


College and University Environmental Scales

The original College and University Environmental

Scales (CUES) was designed to help define the intellectual,

social, and cultural atmosphere of the college as perceived

by students. The first CUES was published by Pace in 1963.

The original instrument consisted of 150 statements about

college life described in terms of the facilities on campus,

college rules and regulations, faculty, curricula, classroom

instruction, and examinations. Student life on campus,

extracurricular activities and other aspects of the institu-

tional environment were included to help describe the

atmosphere and intellectual climate of the college as the

students saw it.

The first edition of the CUES was developed jointly by

Pace and Stern (1958) who selected items from the College

Characteristics Index (CCI). The CCI paralleled the

structure of the Stern Activities Index (SAI) which measured

the personality needs of students. The CCI measured a set

of corresponding environmental demands and conditions that

would presumably be supportive of the personality needs of


After a series of studies involving the use of the CCI

with students from 32 colleges and universities, Pace (1969)

confirmed that the dimensions along which environments dif-

fered from one another were not the same as the dimensions

along which individual students or entire student popula-

tions differed from each other. The CUES, therefore, pro-

vided a means of more accurately measuring college environ-

ments while excluding those dimensions pertaining to the

individual students.

The authors of the CUES sought to eliminate many of the

original 300 items included in the CCI because these items

were considered to be nonfunctional or failed to differen-

tiate between various college environments. Pace (1969)

successfully demonstrated by factor analysis of responses

from over 50 colleges and universities that the CUES was

capable of discriminating between different college


environments. The CUES instrument was later organized into

five scales consisting of 20 statements each and based on

the principle that colleges and universities differ along

five main dimensions: practicality, community, awareness,

propriety, and scholarship.

The development of the CUES followed an opinion polling

model rather than a personality or achievement test model

(Pace, 1969). Responses to the CUES were not influenced by

the personal characteristics of students. Correlations were

made between the responses of individuals to their environ-

ments and characteristics measured by the Allport-Vernon-

Linzey studies of values. In 245 studies, the CUES instru-

ment has been correlated with the Omnibus Personality Inven-

tory, the Heston Personality Inventory, the Activities

Index, the ACE Psychological Examination, and the College

Qualification Test Instrument. Most of the CUES correla-

tions (about 86%) have fallen between .00 and .29. The

correlations proved that information reported by students

about their particular college environments was generally

not related to the personal characteristics of the students.

Pace (1969) indicated that the second edition of the

CUES had the same purpose as the first edition--to aid in

defining the atmosphere or the intellectual-social-cultural

climate of a college as seen by the students. The second

edition of the CUES took into account the number of colleges

and universities which had used the first edition. The

larger number of sample institutions made it possible to

develop new norms based on a more representative number of

students and colleges across the country. In this edition,

the author provided a basis for future revisions and the

introduction of 10 optional new items. The ability to

change the content periodically gave the questionnaire a

more balanced format and provided a system for keeping

abreast of the changes and trends in higher education (Pace,


The scoring system for the second edition of the CUES

was changed in order to reflect the changes in content and

format of the new instrument. When the number of items for

each scale was reduced from 30 to 20, there was also a

change in the pattern for identifying items which were

considered characteristic of the environment. According to

Pace (1969), the changes were put into effect by assigning

equal weight and consideration to all responses used to

describe the characteristics of a particular college en-

vironment. Items were considered to be characteristic or

not characteristic of the environment when there was agree-

ment on the part of 66% or more of the students.

A scoring key for the CUES suggested positive or nega-

tive responses to the items in each scale. The students'

individual responses were scored according to the suggested

responses provided in the key for the questionnaire. After

scoring each student's individual response to any item in


the five scales, responses for all students were grouped and

tallied to identify those items on which 66% of the students

agreed with the answers suggested by the scoring key.

The abbreviated graduate student adaptation of the CUES

follows a Likert-type model which allows five possible re-

sponses ranging from one (not at all) to five (almost al-

ways). This scoring method is consistent with the method

used for scoring the Strain Questionnaire used in this study

to assess levels of stress experienced by graduate students.

The CUES scales have been used by hundreds of colleges

and universities since 1963. During the 1967-1968 school

year, four reports were prepared for the College Entrance

Examination Board describing varied experiences in the use

of the CUES. This instrument according to Pace (1969) still

contained the original five scales with the addition of two

subscales. The original scales (Practicality, Community,

Propriety, Awareness, and Scholarship) were supplemented by

two subscales entitled Campus Morale and Quality of Teaching

and Faculty-Student Relationships.

The Practicality scale has been concerned with the

extent to which some practical advantages could be derived

from the college environment which were of benefit to either

the academic, social or political life of the students. The

Community scale provided information on the degree of

friendliness, understanding, and warmth students might be

expected to receive from faculty members, staff, and fellow

students within their college environments (Pace, 1969).

The scale on Awareness was structured to reveal the

extent of concern the college had for the provision of

opportunities which helped students grow creatively and

develop positive self-concepts. The Propriety scale focused

on the ability of the colleges to adhere to rules of

democracy, fair-play, mutual concern and respect. The

Scholarship scale was concerned with each institution's

adherence to high academic standards which fostered a thirst

for knowledge among students in the environment (Pace,


The items on the Practicality scale were designed to

determine whether a college environment allowed students the

freedom to develop enterprising and entrepreneurial skills.

The scale also measured the extent to which students found

that the college provided social and academic activities

helped assure the future material benefits expected from a

college education. Pace (1969) indicated that such a col-

lege would be as concerned with the students' preparation

for future vocations or careers as it was with the academic

interests and scholarly achievements of students. Pace

(1969) contended that the Practicality scale helped to

determine whether there was evidence of orderly supervision

in college administration and in classroom instruction.

The Practicality scale according to Pace (1969) mea-

sured the extent to which a college environment provided

personal benefits and prestige to students who learned to

operate within an established system. The scale asked

students to determine whether the college was one where

knowing the right people, being in the right clubs, becoming

a leader, and respecting one's superiors was considered

essential to college success. These scales also were

designed to assess whether the environment was characterized

as structured, repressive, or responsive to the needs of

students who pursued entrepreneurial activities. A college

that met the practicality criteria was generally charac-

terized by the students as an environment where fun and

school spirit were integral parts of the college experience

(Pace, 1969).

The items in the Community scale described a friendly,

cohesive, group-oriented campus. Students were asked to

determine the extent to which their college campuses pos-

sessed a community-type environment. This scale measured

the degree of concern students had for the welfare of all

members of their group. The scale also was used to measure

whether the feelings of group-loyalty was experienced by all

students on the college campus. When student responses

reported a congenial atmosphere, the campus was viewed as a

community (Pace, 1969).


The type and amount of involvement faculty members had

with students also was measured by the community scale.

When the college possessed a congenial atmosphere, faculty

members knew the students, were interested in student pro-

blems, and extended themselves in order to be helpful (Pace,

1969). In a community-type college environment, student

life was characterized by sharing rather than by privacy or

cool detachment.

The items in the Awareness scale were designed to

measure the amount of emphasis that the college placed on

the personal development of each student. Pace (1969)

indicated that the college environment could be helpful to

the student by providing an atmosphere conducive to increas-

ing self understanding, reflectiveness, and a sense of

identity. The Awareness scale measured the extent to which

the college was concerned with each student's search for

personal meaning. A college that was aware of students'

personal needs was identified by the inclusion of a wide

range of opportunities for creative activities and positive

personal experiences within the environment.

An environment that possessed awareness manifested con-

cern for world events, the welfare of all mankind, and the

conditions of man in the past, the present, and the future

(Pace, 1969). Such an educational environment placed em-

phasis on developing students' interests in developing

relationships with the larger society. Such environments

included varied aesthetic stimuli intended to expand each

student's knowledge by encouraging questioning, dissent, and

opportunities for personal expression.

The Awareness scale of the CUES questionnaire sought

further to determine whether the environment provided the

students with opportunities to develop political insights,

and idealistic commitments. The items were constructed by

Pace (1969) to assess each college's awareness of the many

and varied needs of college students. This scale measured

the extent to which colleges provided atmospheres in which

these needs were being addressed.

The Propriety scale gave students an opportunity to

evaluate the extent to which polite and considerate behavior

set the tone for the campus. Pace (1969) indicated that the

Propriety scale was one in which adherence to group stan-

dards of decorum were considered to be very important. In a

college environment where propriety was evident, there was a

definite absence of any demonstrative, assertive, or argu-

mentative type activity. Self expression and entrepreneur-

ial activities were discouraged in favor of group cohesive-

ness and conformity to established rules and standards. The

development of self-identity, and self awareness was not

considered a priority.

On campuses where extreme propriety existed, students

were not encouraged to participate in activities which

required risk-taking behaviors. The environment tended to


have interest in being protective and polite to the students

rather than in encouraging intellectual stimulation, social

expansion, or political awareness. Students were asked in

this section of the scales to determine how close their

college campuses adhered to mannerly, considerate, proper,

and conventional behaviors Pace (1969).

Items in the Scholarship scale were used to describe an

environment characterized by heavy emphases on the

development of students' intellectual capacities. Students

were asked to examine the type of scholastic discipline that

existed within their college environments. When colleges

were considered scholastically oriented, the primary en-

vironmental emphases were on competitively high academic and

scholastic achievement. The social and cultural activities

in the college's environment were planned to augment the

academic program and foster the intellectual development of

students both in and out of the classroom (Pace, 1969).

On scholastically-oriented campuses, the pursuit of

knowledge and the investigation of scientific and philoso-

phical theories was carried on rigorously and vigorously in

all facets of the colleges' environments (Pace, 1969). The

students on each college campus were encouraged to place

high value on scholarship and to engage in intellectual

speculation. Students also were encouraged to develop

interests in ideas, and a love of knowledge for its own

sake. Intellectual discipline and academic competitiveness

were regarded highly. On campuses where primary emphases

were placed on scholarship, the instructors stressed high

academic standards in their classrooms and challenged their

students to set and achieve the highest academic goals


The items in the Campus Morale subscale were developed

to describe college environments that were cognizant and

accepting of the social norms established by the academic

community. Pace (1969) indicated such an environment was

characterized by a sense of cohesiveness and friendliness in

all aspects of college life. Respondents were requested to

examine the college in an effort to determine how well stu-

dents fit and assimilated into the campus environment.

Freedom of expression was highly valued in college

environments that fostered high campus morale. Students

also were expected to display commitment to intellectual

pursuits. Pace (1969) intended that this subscale be used

to define environments in which intellectual goals were

exemplified and widely shared by all members of the academic

community. This subscale was considered important to the

measurement of the personal and social atmosphere considered

necessary to campus life. On campuses with high morale, the

student, faculty, and staff relationships were cordial, yet


The items in the Quality of Teaching and Faculty-

Student Relationships subscale characterized the college

environment as one where the members of the faculty were

perceived to be both scholarly and humane in relationships

with students. Pace (1969) sought to identify college

atmospheres which maintained high academic standards while

still emphasizing the need for each department to adapt to

the needs of the students. This subscale also was designed

to measure the amount of flexibility exhibited in student-

faculty relationships. The quality of teaching and faculty-

student relationships were considered positive when the

instructional aspects of the college's programs were infused

with warmth and interest. Faculty and staffs were expected

to display genuine helpfulness toward the students.

The validity of the CUES was further determined by

computing correlations between CUES scores and the various

characteristics of students and institutions. A national

baseline of 100 institutions was used as a basis for com-

parison. The norm group was selected from several represen-

tative geographic locations within the United States

(northeast, south, midwest, mountain, and far west). Three

levels of programs were taken into account. The programs

were adapted from the United States Office of Education's

classification of types II, III, and IV universities and

colleges. The institutions in each category were represen-

tative of colleges and universities which offer degrees

ranging from the Bachelor of Arts to the Doctor of


Philosophy and professional degrees. The group consisted of

both private and public institutions of higher education.

The validity data for the CUES consisted of correla-

tions that were found to be significant at the .01 level of

confidence. According to Pace (1969), the CUES scores were

correlated to indicators of scholastic aptitude.

Correlations between the CUES and the input factor labeled

intellectualityy" by Astin (1965) was used to validate the

Scholastic scale of the instrument. A significant positive

correlation was found between students' academic achieve-

ments and the Scholarship scale of the CUES. According to

Pace (1969), a similar positive relationship was found with

Awareness while a negative relationship was found between

the academic measures and the Practicality scale. The

students' mathematics scores and scientific interest scores

on the SAT were used to further define intellectuality. The

mathematics and science scores correlated positively with

the Scholarship scale and negatively with the Practicality

and Propriety scales.

A variety of student attitudes and activities was

associated with the CUES scale scores. Pace (1969) con-

cluded that the proportion of students regarding themselves

as unconventional was positively related to the Practical-

ity, Community, and Propriety scales. The proportion of

students who regarded themselves as religious was positively

correlated to the Practicality, Community, and Propriety

scales. Regular church attendance was also positively

related to the Community and Awareness scales. Students who

reported no religious preferences were found in greater

proportions in environments with high scores on the Aware-

ness and Scholarship scales.

The proportion of students reporting prior experience

in carrying out a research project was positively related to

the Scholarship scale and negatively related to the Prac-

ticality scale (Pace, 1969). Participation in

extracurricular activities was found to correlate highly

with the Community scale while active participation in civil

rights causes was positively correlated with Scholarship,

Awareness, and Community, but negatively correlated with the

Practicality scale.

Reported correlations of CUES scores with valid instru-

ments and with institutional variables provided valuable and

measurable information about both the college students and

the colleges and universities in the sample. It was learned

that the characteristics of students were generally congru-

ent with the characteristics of the schools attended, al-

though student characteristics did not account for all of

the environmental differences between colleges. Pace (1969)

found that relationships existed between the aesthetic

interests of students and the Awareness scale, and between

the religious interests of the students and the Propriety

and Community scales. The correlations on these behaviors

ranged from .40 to .60 and above.

The overall network of correlations between CUES scores

and other data was characterized as supportive of the as-

sociations expected. The conclusion made by Pace (1969) was

that the campus atmosphere, as measured by the CUES, was

supported by a great deal of concurrent validity. A copy of

the CUES is in Appendix B.

Reliability data for the CUES were obtained from a

national reference group of 100 colleges and universities.

These data were based on the collective perceptions of

groups of college students who were considered qualified

reporters. In the original CUES manual published by Pace

(1963), the norm group consisted of 48 colleges and univer-

sities. The norm group was later extended to include 100

public and private colleges and universities, teacher's

colleges, engineering and science institutes, liberal arts

colleges, denominational colleges and minority colleges from

four geographic regions of the United States.

The scores for each college group were analyzed to

determine how well the items discriminated between different

areas of the college environment. The group scores also

were used to examine the patterns that emerged in the dis-

tribution of scores on the five scales. In examining the

scores of the original norm group of 48 schools, Pace (1963)

reported the following scores: Practicality score (11),


Community score (11), Awareness score (12), Propriety score

(10), and Scholarship score (11). When the scores of the

larger norm group were examined in 1965, the following

scores were reported: Practicality (9), Community (11),

Awareness (10), Propriety (7), and Scholarship (9). Pace

(1969) concluded that the consistently lower median scores

were a result of distributions in which a large number of

scores were skewed toward the lower end of the scales. A

later analysis revealed that the CUES was considered to be

less discriminating at the lower end of the scales than at

the higher end (Pace, 1969).

In an effort to compensate for the differences found in

the median scores of the norming groups, Pace (1969) devel-

oped the scoring method previously discussed. This method

resulted in scores that were more normally distributed and

adequately discriminated at both ends of the scales. Com-

parisons of item discrimination indexes revealed that the

new scoring method was generally superior. Pace (1969)

found that all items correlated positively with the scale

scores of each group of respondents and no item-score cor-

relation was less than .20.

According to Pace (1969), the reliability estimates of

the second edition of the CUES was based on Cronbach's coef-

ficient alpha. This formula took into account the variances

on each item rather than the average or mean for each item.

The items were scored in the same manner as the total scale

(+1, 0, or -1). Reliability scores ranged from .89 to .94

and provided evidence of a high degree of internal consis-

tency for all the scales. Scores on the CUES have proven to

be reliable measures of institutional differences.

Consistently reliable results were further assured when

close attention was paid to sample size. Pace (1969)

provided a general guide to be used in determining the

appropriate sample size for college populations. The more

reporters an institution had the more reliable the results,

and the larger the institution the more subjects were needed

to assure representativeness.

Pace (1969) found that test-retest comparisons over a

two-year period of time, using comparable samples of quali-

fied reporters produced highly consistent results. In 45

comparisons which were made among the scores of sample

respondents, 90% of the respondents were found to differ by

only three points or less on the five original environment

scales. The scores of the sample were highly stable. Pace

(1969) reported that a school's given score on a particular

items in 1964 were found to match 90% of the time on the

same items in 1966.

Characteristics of Graduate Students

The characteristics of graduate school students con-

tribute significantly to the overall environmental atmo-

sphere. According to Heiss (1970), knowledge of the

biographical characteristics of graduate students was cru-

cial to understanding both the college environment and the

challenges facing graduate schools in the United States. In

the study conducted by Heiss (1970), it was learned that

male students outnumbered female students in most graduate

institutions. The biographical information revealed that

the male graduate students outnumbered female students by a

ratio of eight to two. The only field of study in which

female students outnumbered male students was in French in

which 53% of the students were female. Women were highly

represented in English (35%) and in psychology (32%). The

fields which had the lowest number of women graduate stu-

dents in the 1970s were physics (3%), chemistry and philoso-

phy (11%), and biochemistry (12%). Although women have made

great strides in the 1980s, the graduate school rosters of

the University of Florida and the University of South Flor-

ida (1987-88) still showed male graduate students outnumber-

ing female graduate students by a ratio of two to one in

many fields of study.

The average age of graduate students was an environmen-

tal factor considered important by Heiss (1970), who dis-

covered marked differences in ages among doctoral graduate

students. The ages of doctoral students ranged from 21

years of age to 51 years and older. About 20% of the gradu-

ate student respondents were older than members of the

graduate faculty, while 34% were about the same or average


age of members of the graduate faculty. According to Heiss

(1970), private institutions tended to attract the largest

percentage of younger students (21 to 25 years old), while

public institutions attracted only 24% of this younger age

group. Public colleges and universities were found to

enroll slightly more graduate students who were 36 years old

and older than did private institutions.

In examining the marital status of graduate students as

an environmental factor, Heiss (1970) concluded that single

students tended to display more ease in making the commit-

ment to advanced study. Respondents to the study revealed

that divorce is a factor common to many graduate students.

Divorce was less prevalent, however, among graduate students

in the natural sciences than among graduate students in the

humanities. The impact of marital responsibilities on

graduate students revealed that the number of children that

a graduate student has is probably the most important factor

to compute in assessing the commitment a married student

makes when deciding to pursue a graduate degree. The en-

vironment of a graduate school also is affected by each

graduate student's desire to seek the doctoral degree and to

achieve personal advancement and satisfaction. Estimates of

the graduate students' self-worth and intellectual capacity

also were involved in the decision to pursue graduate de-

grees. According to Heiss (1970), graduate students who

held vague ideas about the commitment required for success

in doctoral programs generally found it difficult to make

realistic estimates of the potential needed for success.

Many students used avoidance tactics or pretend that the

degree was not really important in order to put off testing

all possible strengths and academic potential.

While college catalogs described an environment in

which each doctoral student received the personal counsel

and guidance needed to strengthen the student's sense of

self worth and feelings of accomplishment, Heiss (1970)

revealed that mentors were in short supply. The graduate

students' high expectations were very rudely and painfully

crushed when they learned that faculty contacts on campus

were often limited to the classroom or formal appointments

scheduled by a secretary. The graduate students in the

Heiss study revealed that their greatest encouragement often

came from peers. The advice and counsel of fellow graduate

students was only helpful when fellow students were well

informed and respected intellectually. When peer relation-

ships failed, the students reported cases of withdrawal,

unhappiness, and in some instances made decisions to leave

the graduate school program (Heiss, 1970).

In a study by Nangle (1974) on the attitudes of stu-

dents enrolled in graduate programs, it was learned that

graduate students were generally satisfied with the length

of their programs, the faculty, and the grading system. The

same students, however, were least satisfied with the

frequency with which courses were offered, the tuition

rates, and the lack of opportunity to evaluate their cour-

ses. About 67% of the graduate students who responded were

only moderately satisfied with academic advising on their

college campuses. Students were least satisfied with the

availability of assistantships and the size of the stipends

received for their work.

Nangle (1974) discovered several trends in graduate

student attitudes and perceptions of the graduate school

environment. Student characteristics were found to vary

among the 3,106 graduate students living on campus, the

1,051 off-campus students, and the 88 part-time graduate

students. Students working toward specific degrees tended

to have lower levels of satisfaction with their graduate

environments. Levels of satisfaction tended to increase as

degree levels advanced. Doctoral students were somewhat

more positive in their overall attitudes than students at

the masters degree level. The level of satisfaction in-

creased as cumulative hours increased. Nangle (1974) also

found that graduate students living on campus manifested

somewhat more positive attitudes toward the graduate school

environment than off-campus or part-time graduate students.

A study of graduate students attending the University

of California at Davis revealed four characteristics of

great concern to the graduate students sampled. A total of

42% of the students were in need of short term financial

assistance (Winkworth, Seiker, Bailiff & Gaines, 1974).

Another 36% of the Davis University graduate students were

in need of either full-time or part-time employment. About

48% of the students also were concerned with finding jobs in

their majors after graduation. About 33% of the graduate

students sampled indicated a need for assistance in planning

their academic programs. Winkworth, Seiker, Bailiff, and

Gaines (1974) learned that the practical concern for jobs

and finances were paramount in the minds of graduate stu-


The most successful graduate students were found by

(Feldman, 1973) to be single and divorced women who pursued

their career goals with limited role conflict. Least suc-

cessful were women attempting to combine identities as

spouses and students. Whereas marriage was found to be an

asset for men graduate students, married women were often

expected to continue traditional household tasks when they

became students.

Many professors were trained during an era when women

stayed home and allowed their husbands to follow their

academic pursuits. However, with increasing demands for

equality, today's students (typically males) are asked to

perform more household and family duties in addition to

their academic requirements. The conflict of roles and the

ever-present time constraints take their toll on family life

and academic pursuits (Halleck, 1976).

Graduate Student Satisfaction

Difficulties with postgraduate studies do not fit

neatly into categories. The first error, according to Rudd

(1985), may involve the initial decision by some students to

enter graduate school. The next problematic decision may be

what institution to attend for postgraduate study.

According to Rudd (1985), one should regard the selection of

a graduate school as the first test of the student's ability

to conduct research. The student who fails this test may

still conduct research, but will do it poorly and perhaps at

the wrong institution. Sometimes graduate departments may

be so anxious to attract a potentially good student that an

unrealistic picture is presented in order to lure the stu-

dent into the program. Rudd (1985) concludes that it is

difficult for a student to discover whether a particular

university will offer the quality of supervision that both

the student and the subject matter require.

Once students reach the graduate school campus, they

must immediately become familiar with a barrage of rules,

requirements, and new institutional facilities and policies.

Baird (1974) found that graduate students had to make deci-

sions related to the university or department even before

participating in the admissions process. The definitions of

each student's progress, status, and available areas of

study were pre-set by departmental policy. What a student

learned in graduate school was dependent on such factors as

the helpfulness of the department, the quality of faculty

advising, and the availability of scholarships and assis-

tantships (Baird, 1974).

In recent years, there has been increased interest

among researchers in the various aspects of graduate educa-

tion. Field, Holley, and Armenakis (1974) reported that

interest in graduate education has ranged from the predic-

tion of student grades to the investigation of teacher

effectiveness in the university classroom. A number of

studies have been conducted on motivation and satisfaction

across a wide spectrum of environments. The satisfaction of

graduate students in graduate schools, however, has been

ignored by most investigators. Pallone, Hurley, and Rickard

(1971) were able to locate only one study which dealt with

the satisfaction of graduate students with their graduate

school environments.

Interviews with graduate students that were conducted

by Hartnett and Katz (1977) revealed that the attention

which graduate students received from their professors was

far from adequate. Students reported not receiving suffi-

cient feedback about their work, nor having sufficient

opportunity for thinking and working together with faculty

members. Instead, students viewed themselves as a cheap

labor force to be used for research projects. Students were

concerned that professors spent a minimal amount of time

helping them to acquire the skills needed to further their

intellectual development.

Entering graduate students often faced drastic changes

in lifestyles over a short period of time. Barnett (1982)

indicated that a preponderance of past and present problems

may have contributed to the cause of high attrition rates

among first year graduate students. The frustrations of

many first year students were cited by Barnett (1982) as one

reason that a large percentage of first year graduate stu-

dents scored in the critical area on the Holmes and Rahe

Inventory of Critical Life Events. Major geographical

relocations, changes in financial status, separation from

family and friends, the establishment of new relationships,

and the necessity of finding new jobs were found by Barnett

(1982) to be typical of the environmental problems faced by

new graduate students.

According to Barnett (1982), many students entered

graduate programs during ongoing life transitions seeking

false security in the closed environment of the college

campus. Students who may have been considered outstanding

as undergraduates soon learned that there were many other

high achieving students in their graduate school classes.

Doctoral students who entered graduate programs having held

respectable positions within or outside of the university

setting often became frustrated rather than gratified by the

graduate student experience. The combination of multiple


changes and prolonged frustrations set the stage for stress-

related physical and emotional illnesses.

Graduate institutions are concerned with the number of

graduate students who either leave the university without

completing the necessary requirements for the graduate

degree or who fail to meet the academic requirements of the

graduate institution (Rudd, 1985). Efforts to find simple,

uncomplicated, explanations for graduate students' with-

drawal or failure to complete post-graduate studies satis-

factorily have alluded university administrators for many

years. Rudd (1985), however, learned that most researchers

who study graduate school phenomena are not aware of the

roles that emotional or physical illness have in slowing

down or impeding a student's progress. According to Rudd

(1985) such illnesses have even impaired some students'

wills to continue their graduate studies.

Rudd (1985) found that some graduate students had

serious depressive illnesses or personality problems.

Although the chain of causation in the area of student

mental and emotional illness was not always clear, students

have reported that the strain of postgraduate study either

brought on or accentuated certain illnesses, while others

suggested that mental and emotional problems actually caused

failure. Rudd concluded that a more complex interactional

effect may exist. The difficulties of postgraduate study

may aggravate mental health problems which in turn tend to

make study more difficult and produce a downward spiral in

student progress.

Through studies of the doctoral experience, Barnett

(1982) concluded that an inordinate amount of emotional and

physical problems existed among the research and teaching

associates. The symptoms of students fell into categories

that included skin irritations, headaches, gastronomical

disorders, and irregularities of the reproductive organs

that had not been experienced prior to the graduate pro-

grams. While examining the personal-social concerns of

graduate students at the University of California at Davis,

Winkworth, Seiker, Bailiff, and Gaines (1974) discovered

that 77% of the students surveyed perceived the need for

student health care to be a major concern of graduate stu-


Halleck (1976) in looking at emotional problems in

graduate students, suggested that it is possible to discover

reasons for maladaptive behavior by examining the manner in

which an individual seeks to satisfy two basic needs: the

need for meaningful activity and the need for intimacy.

Whether a graduate student's needs are gratified or frus-

trated depends on biological strengths or weaknesses, and

the student's social environment while attending graduate


A common problem of many graduate students is esta-

blishing and maintaining a satisfactory relationship with

the department faculty. Winston (1976) found the student-

faculty relationship to be ambiguous and one-sided. Gradu-

ate students were often subjected to arbitrary treatment

with few means of resisting and surviving long enough to

obtain the graduate degree. In fact, Winston (1976) con-

tends that academic ability, as traditionally defined, is

relatively less important than certain personality variables

in determining which doctoral candidates will graduate.

Student-student relationships present even more am-

biguity than student-faculty relationships. Baird (1969)

revealed that competition for grades, assistantships, and

the favor of professors was a major cause of stress in

graduate students. Stress, rather than academic difficulty,

was more often a cause for tension among graduate students.

Stress, according to Baird (1969), can be low even when

academic difficulty is high, provided that the conditions

are unambiguous, and free of role conflicts.

Given the emphasis placed on the need for interactions

between faculty members and graduate students it was sug-

gested by Feldman (1973) that academic departments examine

the relationships (or lack of them) between students and

professors. Valdez (1982) suggested a "buddy system" ap-

proach in which incoming students could be paired with

advanced graduate students. The proposal would also attempt

to match students according to their marital status and the

number of children in each graduate family. New students

expressed the need to have contact persons with whom they

could explore housing arrangements, shopping, recreational

facilities, child care, potential schools for their children

and child care facilities. These problems were found to be

of special concern to married graduate students.

Heiss (1970) found that an important source of discon-

tent among doctoral students was the discrepancy that ex-

isted between expectations and actuality in doctoral pro-

grams. About 28% of the respondents in the Heiss study

found the investment in graduate education to be greater

than expected while only 12% found the investment to be less

than expected. Many students, according to Heiss (1978),

also indicated a favoritism for departments which displayed

warmth rather than those that exhibited more stratified,

formalized interrelationships. Heiss (1978) warned that if

the student is valued, then there is a need to examine the

process which leads some students to reject or become disil-

lusioned with the educative process. Such an examination,

Heiss suggested, might begin with the academic environment.

Rimmert, Lammert, and McClain (1982), in assessing the

needs of graduate students, indicated several additional

concerns of graduate students. Both married and single

graduate students felt they could benefit from help with

time management, and regularly scheduled leisure time ac-

tivities. The students suggested interaction with their

peers through departmental parties as one form of leisure


It has become increasingly apparent that leisure pat-

terns and behaviors cannot be considered in isolation from

the broader context of people's lifestyles. It was con-

cluded that only by adopting a holistic approach to leisure

could graduate students begin to articulate the complex

links between leisure choices, opportunities, and the con-

straints of work or school activities (Bernard, 1988). In a

study by Shaw (1985), there was considerable consensus with

regard to the perceptual factors associated with leisure

situations. The factors shown to best differentiate leisure

from non-leisure were enjoyment, freedom of choice, relaxa-

tion, intrinsic motivation, and the lack of evaluation. One

area of great concern for both married and single graduate

students was the lack of free time and the inability to

pursue recreational pursuits (McLaughlin, 1985).

Lewis (1983) found a further need for graduate student

couples to be invited to orientation sessions in order to

learn about the stressors associated with graduate study and

the potential problems they could expect to encounter in

their family situations. Emphasis was placed on the neces-

sity for addressing student and family needs in order to

promote maximum student satisfaction and achievement in

graduate school.

Minority Student Environment

Racial patterns in higher education have changed sig-

nificantly during the past 30 years. In 1950, over 90% of

black students (approximately 100,000) were enrolled in

traditionally black colleges and universities (Fleming,

1984). There were 4,000,000 students registered on American

campuses in 1960 with a black enrollment of 200,000. Wilson

(1982) reported that 130,000 black students attended tradi-

tionally black institutions in the 1960s. However, the

period of the mid-sixties and early seventies represented a

significant turning point in the number of blacks and other

minority students being admitted to previously all white

institutions of higher learning (Livingston & Stewart,

1987). The increase in minority group attendance at white

colleges and universities during the 1970s brought a rich

resource of cultural diversity to American higher educa-

tion. Although total minority enrollment increased until

the 1980s, Pruitt and Isaac (1985) discovered that by 1982,

a decline in minority student enrollment was in progress.

The decline in black enrollment was followed by a decline in

Hispanic enrollment. Student personnel administrators

realized that a diagnosis of student problems was needed

in order to maintain minority enrollment. According to

Minatoya and Sedlacek (1983), however, recognition and

diagnosis of minority student problems must be accompanied

by preventive techniques and interventions. Student affairs

officers have expended little effort toward providing

programs that help students meet such problems as personal

and career identity, academic development, and financial


Minatoya and Sedlacek (1983), found universities con-

tained a number of heterogenous sub-groups who represented

various proportions of the student body. When data were

gathered from the general campus population and summarized,

the picture that emerged was the "average" student which may

or may not have represented the needs of members from par-

ticular minority group populations. Global needs assess-

ments, according to Keller, Petrowski, and Sherry (1982),

have often obscured the differential needs of the hetero-

genous sub-groups of minority students. Even when needs

assessments were conducted for the greater group of minority

students, programs developed for prototypical minority

students have ignored the critical differences among the

various minority subgroups.

Problems experienced by diverse student subgroups

tended to increase and vary as ethnic and racial minority

populations increased on college campuses (Gibbs, 1975).

Research findings of Webster, Sedlacek, and Miyares (1979),

indicated that blacks were more likely to view themselves as

victims of racism and discrimination than were Asian, His-

panic, or white students. Murray and Pettibone (1972) sug-

gested that Chicano students perceived the university milieu

as being less scholarly than did white students although

Garza and Nelson (1973) reported an opposite finding.

In a study of student perceptions of the climate on

campus, Martinez and Sedlacek (1982) found that black

students thought other ethnic groups held more liberal views

on a variety of social and political issues than white

students. Martinez and Sedlacek (1982) learned that His-

panics and other minority groups held perceptions of the

college climate somewhere between the views of blacks and

whites. Webster, Sedlacek, and Miyares (1979) reported a

number of problems that were unique to particular raci-

al/cultural groups. It was noted that Asian-American,

black, and Hispanic university students differed signifi-

cantly in attitudes, perceptions, and experiences.

Research findings have suggested that a richer descrip-

tion of a student population could be extracted when each

component group was examined as a separate component.

Pruitt and Isaac (1985) learned that increased knowledge of

various ethnic groups could assist in the recruitment and

maintenance of students with different cultural, experien-

tial, and cognitive backgrounds. As the demographic mix of

the country changed, universities discovered the need to

develop human resources from all sectors of the population.

A large number of qualified minority students have not

been entering American graduate schools according to Pruitt

and Isaac (1985). Some minority students have been

attracted to professional schools, while others, for finan-

cial, cultural, and personal reasons, have not considered

graduate school to be a logical possibility. Although

minority students have proved that they can and do perform

well once admitted to graduate school, Pruitt and Isaac

(1985) found that many minority students were being excluded

from graduate school under the guise of objective standards

such as the Graduate Record Exam or similar tests. Allen

(1981) found that among black students who did enroll in

white institutions, only 30% graduated compared to 70% of

the black students who graduated from traditionally black

institutions during the same time period.

Minatoya and Sedlacek (1983) decided to study the

problems of minority students by assessing needs and aca-

demic expectations of sub-groups. The study revealed unique

problems particular to some groups and other problems that

were common to all students. For the purpose of analyses,

Asian-Pacific Islanders were combined with Hispanics and

denoted as non-black. While white students frequently

mentioned the geographic location as a reason for selecting

the university, minority students were more apt to cite

overall academic quality as a major reason for selecting a

particular institution.

In a study of differential needs and characteristics

among racial/ethnic sub-groups of college students, Minatoya

and Sedlacek (1983) discovered that blacks (65%) and whites

(52%) were more likely than non-black minority students to

live in university housing. Non-white minority students

(24%) expected to commute from 11 to 50 miles each way to

the campus. Most of the Asian-American and Hispanic

students (68%) did not expect to identify with any formal

campus group during their first year in school, while white

students were more likely than black students or other

minorities to be identified with a fraternities or sorori-


About 50% of the black students in the population

sampled by Minatoya and Sedlacek (1983) had grown up in

cities. The reverse pattern existed when college students

were asked if they had grown up in a suburb. While 77% of

the white students and 68% of the Hispanic students and non-

black minorities grew up in suburban areas, only 36% of

black students had lived in suburban areas. Over 65% of the

white students and 42% of the black students had lived in

neighborhoods that matched their racial identities. More

than 50% of the Asian-American and Hispanic students, how-

ever, had grown up in neighborhoods where members of their

racial-ethnic group constituted less than 5% of the popula-

tion (Minatoya & Sedlacek, 1983).

Black students and other minorities were more likely

than white students to depend on part-time employment in

order to stay in school. Minatoya and Sedalacek (1983)

learned, that while black students cited making new

friendships as most crucial to their personal development,

whites cited social life, dating and parties. Asian-Ameri-

can and Hispanic cited both social life and job experience

as the principal contributor to their personal growth.

Black students were more likely to see themselves as liber-

als when compared to whites and other minorities. All

groups of students agreed that the principle reason for

remaining in the university and completing the degree pro-

gram was the preparation mandated by their chosen profes-

sions (Minatoya & Sedlacek, 1983).

Black and white students' responses tended to differ

greatly when questioned about satisfaction with their gradu-

ate school environments in a survey conducted by Baird

(1974). Blacks and whites differed more in opinions regard-

ing formal degree requirements than any other area. Black

students were least satisfied with the formalities and dif-

ficulties involved in meeting the steps toward a terminal

degree. Blacks also were concerned, according to Baird,

with the lack of opportunities for independent study, avail-

able teaching opportunities, and the relevance of the re-

quirements to the actual job expected. Black and white

graduate students differed on items which asked about such

environmental resources as library facilities, the use of

laboratories and computers and on policy issues such as

academic advisement, awarding of assistantships, admissions

and retention policies of the university (Baird, 1974).


Black graduate students in the study conducted by Baird

(1974) reported more remote relations with professors,

classes that were conducted too formally, and departments

that were not friendly and accessible to the students.

Baird (1974) concluded that the feelings of mistrust of

professors on the part of black graduate students may have

been due in part to the fact that most of the graduate

professors were white. The experiences of black and white

graduate students showed some areas of similarity, but for

the most part, were quite different.

In a study comparing black, Hispanic, and Asian stu-

dents, Patterson and Sedlacek (1979) concluded that the

attitudes and perceptions of one ethnic group cannot be

generalized to all minority groups. Webster and Sedlacek

(1982) supported the position that students from different

ethnic groups varied when attitudes of racial groups were

compared regarding the use of university student unions.

While Patterson, Sedlacek and Perry (1984) found differences

among black and Hispanic students on two different college

campuses, the differences between the two university en-

vironments were more closely related to the geographic

locations of the schools (rural vs. urban), than in the

racial identity of the groups surveyed. The only signifi-

cant interracial interaction between the urban and rural

institutions was that at both schools, Hispanics were more


likely than blacks to have dated someone from another racial


Minority students on predominately white campuses faced

the additional pressures of dating problems, loneliness, and

the need for interracial interaction (Gunnings, 1982).

Minority students brought to predominately white colleges

and universities specific mores and customs, as well as

unique cultural and family influences. The context of the

structured university environment in which minority students

were required to live and function were found to effect the

students' perceptions and methods of responding to stressful

situations. Counselors must be aware of how college en-

vironments have affected the physiological and psycho-social

lives of minority students, and how the environments in-

fluence the students' ability to cope with stress and the

demands of the institution (Gunnings, 1982).

If campus interracial climates show the variation

suggested by the literature, it may be important for student

personnel workers to have information about the interracial

climates on college campuses before proceeding with programs

and services. Aside from programs aimed directly at inter-

racial understanding, there may be implications for improved

admissions and orientation programs, awareness of student

financial problems, and more attention to academic and

personal advising (Patterson, Sedlacek, & Perry, 1984).

Theoretical Models of Stress

"Stress is a scientific concept which has suffered from

the mixed blessing of being too well known and too little

understood" (Selye, 1980, p. 127). Stress also is described

as the non-specific response of the body to any demand. In

some respects, every response of the body to a demand is

unique and specific. All stressors however, have one thing

in common; they increase the demand for readjustment, for

performance of adaptive functions which reestablish normal-

cy. Selye (1980) hypothesized the non-specific adaptive

response to any situation was always the same, regardless of

the stimulus. What varied was the degree of the response

and the intensity of the demand for adjustment. Therefore,

Selye (1980) found it immaterial to speculate on whether the

stressorr" was pleasant or unpleasant.

Appley and Trumbull (1967a) defined stress as both a

stimulus and a response phenomenon. As a stimulus, the term

has been used to describe situations characterized as new,

intense, rapidly changing, sudden or unexpected. When

described as a response, stress often referred to bodily

response in excess of "normal or usual" states of anxiety,

tension, or upset. Any behavior which deviated momentarily

or over time from what was considered normal for the in-

dividual or the reference group could be called a stressful

situation according to this definition (Appley & Trumbull,


Environmental stressors have been known to elicit com-

plex patterns of responses and behaviors. Individuals some-

times engaged in "fight or flight" defensive patterns which

were the most common reactions employed during early evolu-

tionary history. Changes in physiological variables seemed

to affect the biological ability to adapt and facilitate

active coping behaviors. Other stressful situations,

however, existed in which the environmental situations or

the individual's perceived capacities did not permit active

coping to occur. In such instances, the individual's re-

sponse was reduced to submission or withdrawal (Field,

McCabe & Schneiderman, 1985).

The development of western civilization has led to a

change in the way individuals respond to stressors. Al-

though the need still exists to cope actively in dealing

with stressors, physical aggression is usually precluded by

societal restraints. Individuals, however, have still been

known to experience increases in nervous system activity,

rapid heart rates, changes in the hormonal processes, and

possible suppression of the immune system (Riley, 1981).

When confrontational situations have occurred relatively

infrequently, the impact upon physical health has likely

been minimal. However, when individual have been engaged in

defensive, conservative, or withdrawal responses continuous-

ly over an extended period of time, these behaviors have

sometimes led to chronic disease (Field, McCabe & Schnei-

derman, 1985).

A substantial body of research indicated that behavi-

oral stressors can alter immune responses and thereby in-

crease disease susceptibility. In general, the research has

supported the view that exposure to intense, unavoidable

stress has increased susceptibility to disease (Locke,

1982). In a study of 1,327 entering West Point Military

Academy students, Karl, Evans, and Schneider (1979) screened

the students for the presence of the Epstein-Barr virus

antibody to infectious mononucleosis. They found that two-

thirds of the entering cadets arrived immune to this infec-

tion. However, 20% of the susceptibles became infected each

year; and of these, 25% contracted the disease. The risk

factors were (a) having a high level of motivation for a

military career, (b) doing relatively poor academically, and

(c) having fathers perceived as being overachievers.

Recent links also have been established between styles

of living, coping, and somatic illnesses. Friedman and

Roseman (1974) argued that the primary cause of heart dis-

ease was a distinctive pattern they called "Type A" beha-

vior. This behavior pattern involved constant pressured

interactions with the environment and a compelling sense of

time-urgency, aggressiveness, competitiveness, and general-

ized hostility. This pattern was seen as a mode of coping

with societal values of achievement and the work ethic in

which such values have been internalized by the "Type A"


There seemed to be little question that stress arousal

affected health and human functioning. Reviews by Selye

(1976) and Everly, Feldman, and Weiss (1985) concluded that

excessively intense, chronic, or frequent stress arousal

constituted a pathogenic condition. Furthermore, excessive

stress also had been linked to vocational dissatisfaction

and disfunction by Cooper & Payne (1978). Given the data

linking stress arousal to disease and dysfunction, it seems

reasonable to conclude that the phenomenon of human stress

continues to warrant systematic inquiry.

Stress and Environment Interaction

Lewin (1938) left a legacy to psychology by advancing

both group and personality theories. Perhaps Lewin's most

important contribution was the theory that behavior results

from an interaction between an individual and that indivi-

dual's cognitive structure of the environment. Lewin (1938)

challenged researchers to carefully examine the relative

contributions of both the person and the environment to gain

a comprehensive understanding of behavior. Exclusive con-

centration on either factor could fail to grasp the dynamic

quality of the interaction.

Current research tends to focus on aspects of either

the person or the environment as potential causes of


targeted behaviors. Sub-areas within psychology are primar-

ily interested in one or the other of these factors and

rarely assess the relative conditions of both behaviors.

For example, McGuire (1973) revealed social psychology

concentrated on the impact of manipulating the environment

to explain reliably observed effects of behavior. Only

rarely did the individuals receive needed attention in these

studies. Dissatisfaction with the progress of social

psychology has recently been articulated through innovations

and studies that offer the promise that persons and environ-

ment can be studied simultaneously (Keating, 1978).

Isolation of environmental factors as a sole cause of

human stress (or any other personal response) is inadequate.

Keating (1978) found stress and stress-related behavior to

be the result of the person and that person's cognitive

structure of the environment. Helson (1964) concentrated on

the adaptation levels and the flexibility of human response

to physical situations. Helson found that not only were

people adaptable, but individual preferences for levels of

stimulation varied greatly. A situation one person finds

intolerable may be scarcely noticed by another. Lee (1966)

learned how individuals developed cognitive strategies that

helped them avoid or modify incoming stimuli from their


In analyzing cross-situational consistency and personal

responses, Moos (1969) analyzed observations of subjects'


actual overt behavior (smiling, talking, smoking) and self-

ratings in the presence of actual situations. Moos found

person-by-situation interaction variance was more important

than the variance due to persons alone. In studies of

intellectual and cognitive factors, there was some evidence

for both longitudinal and cross-situational consistency.

Endler (1976) suggested that one reason for greater similar-

ity in longitudinal data than in cross-situational data was

the greater opportunity to select the situations encountered

throughout life.

Work and family situations sometimes produced distress

even in individuals with effective stress coping skills in

other areas. The organizational work structure according to

Huse (1975) exerted its own set of unique forces on the

individual. Organization have used these forces in an

attempt to channel the individual's behavior toward certain

goals. Huse (1975) found that physical escape or active

manipulation of the environment offered some individuals a

possible alternative to aversive environmental pressures.

A number of investigators have attempted to understand

the role of the physical environment in life crises. Pro-

shansky (1978) cited the physical environment as a direct

cause of life crises. Changes in physical settings were

found to cause sudden and intense stressful experiences for

individuals and groups. Even those crises fostered by acute

social, cultural and psychological events have been either

exacerbated or mitigated by the physical context in which

the events have occurred. Life crises in turn have had

implications for changes in perceptions, uses, and quality

of existing environments (Proshansky, 1978).

Recent developments pertaining to urban stress, learned

helplessness and life changes have caused researchers to pay

attention to the implications of environmental controlla-

bility for human well-beings. Glass and Singer (1972) found

the dimensions of perceived and actual control over the

environment was essential to formulations of stress, stress-

ful events and learned helplessness. Although researchers

emphasized the relationship between environmental control

and personal well-being, the concept of control has remained

relatively undifferentiated with regard to such factors as

control over physical versus control over social dimensions

of the environment (Stokols, 1976).

Endler (1978) believed it was necessary to focus on

persons' perceptions of situations and the meanings that

these situations had for them. Endler urged researchers to

isolate the types of situations that made individuals

anxious and the cues in the environment which they perceived

as stressful or threatening. Endler (1978) concluded that

the message sent by the environment may not be the message

that the individual received.

Measuring Stress

The Strain (Stress) Questionnaire (SQ) was developed by

Lefebvre and Sandford (1984). The purpose of the (SQ) was

to measure strain (stress) as a syndrome of physical, be-

havioral, and cognitive symptoms that were elicited, to

varying degrees, by environmental demands upon the in-

dividual. Several self-report measures have been developed

to assess various stress stimuli and the processes of trans-

actions existing between persons and their environments

(i.e., coping scales). The few instruments that purported

to evaluate responses to stress either emphasized the soma-

tic aspects of the responses or have been couched in the

context of affective states such as depression or anxiety.

Despite extensive research in the area of stress,

little effort had been expended toward the development of a

self-report instrument that measured the everyday manifesta-

tions of the stress response (Selye, 1976). These manifes-

tations include physical, behavioral, and cognitive signs.

From this perspective, the assessment of all modalities of

stress (here referred to as strain) response has been con-

sidered important to diagnosis and prescription. The Strain

Questionnaire (SQ) appeared to be a valid and reliable

measure of strain in both cross-sectional and longitudinal

studies. It has shown potential as a screening tool in

identifying persons most likely to benefit from specific

stress management techniques (Lefebvre & Sandford, 1985).

An item pool of 48 physical, behavioral, and cognitive

signs of strain were generated through references made to

Selye (1976) and Lefebvre and Lawlis (1979). Four clinical

psychology interns with experience in treating stress disor-

ders were asked to sort the items into either physical,

behavioral, or cognitive categories. Inter-rater reliabil-

ity of these sorts ranged from r = .88 to r = 1.00.

Lefebvre and Sandford (1984) decided to include all 48

items in the SQ. Individuals were instructed to circle the

letters which most closely corresponded to how often "in the

past week" they had experienced or felt each of the items

listed. Responses were recorded as A = never, B = rarely, C

= sometimes, D = frequently, and E = constantly. These

responses were subsequently transposed to numerical equiva-

lents (from A = 1 to E = 5) for statistical analyses. In

subsequent work, these adjectives have been anchored with

the descriptors A = never (0 days a week), B = rarely (1-2

days a week), C = sometimes (3-4 days a week), D = frequent-

ly (5-6 days a week), E = constantly (7 days a week).

The SQ was composed of three scales: physical, behavi-

oral, and cognitive. Scoring procedures were based on

individual scales plus the full SQ score. The left-hand

column of the SQ contained the 28 physical signs of strain

such as "backaches." They were followed in the right-hand

column by 12 behavioral items such as "spent time alone,"

and eight cognitive signs of strain such as "things can't

get any worse." Each scale score was calculated by comput-

ing the sums of the individual symptom ratings within each

scale. In a factor analysis of the SQ, Lefebvre and Sand-

ford (1985) further identified 11 orthogonal factors.

Normative data for the SQ, were obtained on 285 males

and 127 females (n = 412) who had a mean age of 33 years

(range 17-58 years). This group consisted of 38 elementary

and secondary education teachers and 45 insurance agents who

were enrolled in stress management classes; 110 naval

engineers and 119 graduate business students who completed

it as part of a battery of instruments assessing health-

related behaviors and attitudes; and 100 undergraduate

students who also took it as part of a battery of question-

naires (Lefebvre & Sandford, 1985).

Estimates of internal consistency for each subscale

(physical, behavioral, and cognitive) and the total SQ were

computed by use of the Spearman-Brown split half reliability

and Cronbach alpha correlation statistics. In addition,

test-retest correlations were obtained from a subsample of

68 graduate business students who completed another SQ four

weeks after the first administration. Split-half reliabil-

ities ranged from .62 (behavioral subscale) to .88 (total

SQ). Cronbach's alpha values were slightly higher, ranging

from .71 to .94. The test-retest reliabilities were quite

similar for the SQ and the subscales, with a range of .73 to

.79 (Lefebvre & Sandford, 1985). Concurrent validity was

established by correlations between the SQ, its three sub-

scales, and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) from the

sample of 68 graduate students. These data indicated the

existence of a moderate degree of shared variance by the two

instruments (approximately 50%) which was primarily attri-

buted to the overlap of cognitive symptoms.

Lefebvre and Sandford (1985) found all groups except

the naval engineers were under somewhat stressful circum-

stances when they completed the SQ. Both the insurance

agents and the teachers had been self-referred for stress

management workshops, and the student groups were evaluated

one week before final examinations. Timing was based on the

hypothesis that these conditions would lead to differences

among the groups, ANOVAs were done on the group means for

the SQ physical and cognitive scales. All four analyses

were significant at (p < .00001). Newman-Keuls analyses of

the differences between the means, revealed mean scores for

the naval engineers which were significantly lower than

other subgroups with the exception of scores on the measure

of physical strain. On this scale, the naval engineers did

not differ from business students and scored slightly lower

than the remaining three groups.

An examination of the predictive utility of the SQ was

conducted by Lefebvre and Sandford (1985) using the business

students as a sample population. Three subscale scores were

obtained by using multiple regression techniques to predict

total SQ scores at the end of a four-week follow-up period.

The equation was a significant predictor of later stress at

(f(3,64) = 38.34, p < .0001) with R = .64. It was learned

that there were few direct effects for one variable on the

other. Further multiple regression analyses suggested that

over a one-month time period, 45% or more of the variability

in each subscale could still be accounted for by its initial


Factor analyses showed the importance of using a cogni-

tive/behavioral dimension in evaluating stress symptoms.

The large proportion of the scale's variance accounted for

by this factor reinforced the notion that purely physical

approaches to the assessment of the stress responses miss a

large portion of the syndrome. The multiple regression

analyses failed to note any predictive function from one

modality to another. Consequently, disfunction in one sys-

tem (e.g., physical) does not predict subsequent stress in

another modality (e.g., cognitive).

The menstrual complaints factor may not be a stable

measure in the analysis of the total SQ since only the 127

women in the sample responded to these items. Lefebvre &

Sandford (1985) chose not to replicate these items as

automatic complaint factors in analyses of the physical sub-

scale. (Items reflecting menstrual complaints were not used

in this study). A copy of the SQ is found in Appendix C.