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Validation of Reasons for Living and Their Relationship with Suicidal Ideation in Korean College Students

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This study aimed to examine the validity of reasons for living (RFL) and the protective role they may play against suicidal ideation in college students in South Korea. A total of 277 undergraduate students participated by completing the College Student Reasons for Living Inventory (CS-RFL), along with measures of suicide risk including depression, hopelessness, and suicidal ideation. The five CS-RFL subscales displayed strong negative correlations with the three indicators of suicide risk. Hierarchical regression analysis results revealed significant main effects of Survival and Coping Beliefs and Moral Objections to Suicide on suicidal ideation after controlling for depression and hopelessness. Moreover, a general tendency toward lower levels of RFL, especially Moral Objections and Responsibility to Family and Friends, was observed compared to those reported in Asian American and European American students. Qualitative studies are needed to increase the validity of RFL inventories and verify whether the observed cultural differences, such as lower Moral Objections, are due to actual variance in underlying belief systems or mere systematic effects of the study variables or measurement bias. Overall, the strong relationship between RFL and suicidal ideation suggest that RFL may be an important factor in assessing suicide risk and devising preventive measures for Korean college students.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Psychology,Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea

Publication date: September 1, 2012

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