Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts




Present Study. Although there is considerable overlap between the body image and the self concept, it would be premature to draw any conclusions regarding one based upon the other until the nature and extent of correlation is obtained. This study is an attempt to determine the extent and direction that an individual's body image may fluctuate as a function of growing old. It is concerned with how the human organism may change over time with respect to a single aspect of the constellations of factors that go into making up a person's self concept. More specifically, do body part ratings along a semantic differential get at the nature and extent of possible age changes in values and attitudes con­cerning the body image?

If changes in body ratings between samples of different age groups are related to the aging process, it seems reasonable to assume that these changes will be generally in a negative (self depreciatory) direction after maturity, gradual rather than abrupt and tend to be irreversible.

The following predictions are submitted :

1. Once early adulthood has been passed, there will be a more negative view of body parts in general. There will be a tendency for more pessimistic evaluations of the physical self.

2. Some categories of body concepts (e.g., external, internal or functions) will show earlier or later devaluation than others.

3. Some categories of body concepts will show a significant correlation with the physical self and the self ratings.

4. In the semantic differential technique there will be evaluative, potency and activity scales which may differ in assigned value for each category of concepts

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