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Influences Of Stress And Situation-Specific Mastery Beliefs And Satisfaction With Social Support On Well-Being And Academic Performance

Gary Felsten, Kathy Wilcox

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The present study examined the effects of stress and cumulative situation-specific mastery beliefs and satisfaction with social support on somatic and psychological symptomatology and academic performance of 146 college men. Stress was directly related to increased symptomatology and decreased grade point average, whereas mastery beliefs were directly associated with reduced depression and anxiety. Satisfaction with social support was related to anxiety through an interaction with mastery. Neither mastery nor satisfaction with support appeared to act as a stress-buffer through a statistical interaction with stress to moderate effects of high stress. However, earlier analysis of some of the same data showed that total stress, the best predictor of each outcome in this study, was reduced by the combination of strong situation-specific mastery beliefs and high satisfaction with support for subjects who faced many stressors. The combined findings show that situation-specific mastery beliefs reduced appraisal of stress and were associated with better psychological adjustment.