Descriptions of the subjective environment

These data have been collected in the longitudinal study since the sixth (1991) cycle as well as in all family studies.

Family environment. The eight scales of the Family Environment Scale (Moos & Moos, 1986) were abbreviated to five items for each scale, and the individual items were converted into 5-point Likert scales. Items were edited to be suitable for inclusion in two versions of the instrument: (1) a form suitable for describing the perceived environment in the family of origin; (2) a form suitable for describing the perceived environment in the current family. For the latter, two versions were prepared: one suitable for individuals living in multi-member family settings and one for individuals currently living by themselves. For purposes of the latter form, “family” was defined as those individuals who the respondent felt were close to him or her and with whom a personal interaction occurred at least once every week.
The eight family environment scales are thought to assess the following dimensions:
* Cohesion. (Relationship) Example: “Family members really help one another.”
* Expressivity. (Relationship) Example: “We tell each other about our personal problem.”
* Conflict. (Relationship) Example: “Family members hardly ever lose their temper.”
* Achievement Orientation. (Personal growth) Example: “We feel it is important to be the best at whatever we do.”
* Intellectual–Cultural Orientation. (Personal growth) Example: “We often talk about political and social problems.”
* Active–Recreational Orientation. (Personal growth) Example: “Friends often come over for dinner or to visit.”
* Organization. (System maintenance) Example: “We are generally very neat and orderly.”
* Control. (System Maintenance) Example: “There are set ways of doing things at home.”
Work environment. In a manner similar to the family environment scales, three scales of the Work Environment Inventory (Moos, 1981) were also abbreviated to five items and converted to 5-point Likert scales. The content attributed to these dimensions is as follows.
1. Autonomy. The extent to which employees are encouraged to be self-sufficient and make their own decisions. Example: “You have a great deal of freedom to do as you like in your workplace.”
2. Control. The extent to which management uses rules and pressure to keep employees under control. Example: “You are expected to follow set rules in doing your work.”
3. Innovation. The degree of emphasis on variety, change, and new approaches. Example: “Your are encouraged to do your work in different ways.”
Family contact. A 7-item (6-point Likert scale) form assesses the degree of actual contact between family members. Items inquire about the number of years family members have lived in the same household and the frequency of current personal contact, telephone contact, written contact, and contact through other informants.‚Äč