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SELF-ESTEEM REGULATION IN THREATENING SOCIAL COMPARISON: THE ROLES OF BELIEF IN A JUST WORLD AND SELF-EFFICACY

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Abstract:

In this study, the author hypothesized that a high belief in a just world for Self (BJW-S), coupled with high perceived self-efficacy, would contribute to preservation of self-esteem in threatening social comparison. Participants (N=186) completed the General Self-Efficacy Scale (Walliser, Schwartzer, & Jerusalem, 1993) and the BJW-S and BJW for Others (BJWO) scales (Lipkus, Dalbert, & Siegler, 1996). They were then given either an upward (unfavorable) or downward (favorable) social comparison in the academic field. The results suggested that BJW-S (but not BJW-O) coupled with high self-efficacy contributed to maintaining self-esteem in the face of an unfavorable social comparison. However, in cases of low perceived self-efficacy, BJW-S acted in the opposite direction: when BJW-S was low, self-esteem was not affected by unfavorable social comparisons, while it decreased when BJW-S was high.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2005.33.1.69

Publication date: January 1, 2005

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