Social Indicators Research

, Volume 115, Issue 1, pp 457–466 | Cite as

Validating the Portuguese Version of the Satisfaction With Life Scale in an Elderly Sample

  • Patricia Sancho
  • Laura Galiana
  • Melchor Gutierrez
  • Elizabeth-Hama Francisco
  • José M. TomásEmail author


Life satisfaction is referred to a cognitive, judgmental process (Diener et al. in J Pers Assess 49:71–75, 1985), in which person’s quality of life is globally assessed according to his/her chosen criteria (Shin and Johnson in Soc Indic res 5:475–492, 1978). Thus, life satisfaction is a conscious cognitive judgment, based on the comparison of one’s life with a self-imposed standard or set of standards, which lead to a global assessment of life (Pavot and Diener in Psychol Assess 5:164–172, 1993). Among the many scales developed to measure life satisfaction, the Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS, Diener et al. in J Pers Assess 49:71–75, 1985) is one of the global life satisfaction scales more often used in the research arena. It is composed of five items assessing global life satisfaction, using a Likert type response format. The aim of this paper is to validate the Portuguese version of the SWLS via confirmatory factor analysis, with a sample of 1,003 elderly from Angola. Reliability, factorial and criterial validity estimates are presented. Overall, the results shown that the scale had an adequate one-factor confirmatory solution, satisfying reliability indices, and adequate criterion-related validity when assessed in a sample of Angolan elderly. The discussion relates the results with existing literature and posits the contributions of the paper: firstly, it offers the researchers on life satisfaction in Portuguese-speaking contexts a brief, self-rated measure of satisfaction with life that has sound psychometric properties, validity, and reliability; secondly, it is the first confirmatory validation of the scale in Portuguese.


Satisfaction With Life Scale Reliability Validity Confirmatory factor analysis Elderly 



The research in this paper is partially funded by a grant from the Spanish Government (project PSI2010-21334). Laura Galiana is beneficiary of a grant from the University of Valencia (V Segles, VCL/Campus Program).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia Sancho
    • 1
  • Laura Galiana
    • 1
  • Melchor Gutierrez
    • 2
  • Elizabeth-Hama Francisco
    • 3
  • José M. Tomás
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Methodology for the Behavioural Sciences, Faculty of PsychologyUniversity of ValenciaValenciaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology, Faculty of PsychologyUniversity of ValenciaValenciaSpain
  3. 3.Department of Educational SciencesInstituto Superior de Ciências da EducaçãoLuandaAngola

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