ERIC Number: ED260311
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Mar-22
Reference Count: N/A
Life Event Types and Attributional Styles as Predictors of Depression in the Elderly.
Patrick, Linda F.; Moore, Janet S.
The reformulated learned helplessness model for the prediction of depression has been investigated extensively in young adults. Results have linked attributions made to undesirable, controllable events to depression in this age group. This reformulated model was investigated in 97 elderly women and was contrasted to the original learned helplessness model which links late onset depression to the uncontrollable events experienced by older persons. Subjects completed the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, a scale constructed from the Geriatric Scale of Recent Life Events, and a self-rating of health. In addition, they ranked their attributions of the cause of each of their experienced life events on the dimensions of locus, globality, and stability. The results indicated that the total number of recently experienced life events was significantly related to depression while only one event type (negative, not responsible) was significantly related to depression. When the effects of overall number of life events were controlled, two event types were significantly related to depression: negative, not responsible events were directly related to depression while positive, responsible events were inversely related to depression. These results do not support the reformulated model of learned helplessness as a predictor of depression in the elderly. Support was found for the original model in that the negative events, over which there is little chance for personal control, were significantly related to depression. These findings suggest that the etiology of late onset depression may be different from the etiology of depression in young adults. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A