Richard Petosa

Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Robert Baum, Joseph Cangemi, Bruce Goodrow


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Original department Health & Safety

Degree Program

Department of Public Health

Degree Type

Master of Arts


The purpose of this study was to determine if subjects who report more self-actualizing characteristics, as measured by the Personal Orientation Inventory, will report a significantly greater amount of preventive health practices when compared to subjects measured to have non-actualizing characteristics. The sample population consisted of 453 undergraduate students registered in Personal Health 100 at Western Kentucky University during the Spring Semester of 1978. All subjects completed the Personal Orientation Inventory (a validated measure of self-actualization) and the Health Practices Inventory (a validated measure of health behavior). The Personal Orientation Inventory was used to differentiate the fifty most and least actualized subjects from the sample population. A t-test was used to determine if there was a significant difference in the Health Practice Inventory mean scores between the high and low-actualizing samples. The difference between the mean scores for the two groups was significant at the .001 alpha level. This research has generated preliminary evidence supporting the notion that self-actualizing individuals report behaviors more consistent with sound personal health practices when compared to low-actualizing individuals.


Medicine and Health Sciences | Public Health | Public Health Education and Promotion