A Positive Psychology Intervention Program in a Culturally-Diverse University: Boosting Happiness and Reducing Fear

Abstract

While developing excellence in knowledge and skills, academic institutions have often overlooked their obligation to instill wellbeing. To address this, we introduced a 14-week positive psychology intervention (PPI) program (Happiness 101) to university students from 39 different nations studying in the United Arab Emirates (N = 159). Students were exposed to 18 different PPIs. Pre, post, and 3-month-post measures were taken assessing hedonic and eudaimonic well-being, and beliefs regarding the fear and fragility of happiness. At the end of the semester, relative to a control group (N = 108), participants exposed to the Happiness 101 program reported higher levels of both hedonic and eudaimonic well-being, and lower levels of fear of happiness and the belief that happiness is fragile. Boosts in life satisfaction and net-positive affect, and reduction of fear of happiness and the belief that happiness is fragile were maintained in the Happiness 101 group 3 months post-intervention.

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Lambert, L., Passmore, H. & Joshanloo, M. A Positive Psychology Intervention Program in a Culturally-Diverse University: Boosting Happiness and Reducing Fear. J Happiness Stud 20, 1141–1162 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-018-9993-z

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Keywords

  • Positive psychology
  • Positive psychology interventions
  • Culture
  • Fear of happiness
  • Fragility of happiness
  • Wellbeing
  • United Arab Emirates