Date of Award

Fall 12-16-2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Janet Smith

Second Advisor

Dr. Chris Spera

Third Advisor

Dr. Janice Jewett


Abstract: This is a correlational study utilizing Nola Pender’s Health Promotion Model (HPM) for examining the key influential factors regarding involvement in a health promoting lifestyle (HPL) among undergraduate students at Pittsburg State University. Ninety-six (96) undergraduate students enrolled in general psychology courses at Pittsburg State University completed the Health Promoting Lifestyle Profile-II (HPLP-II; Walker, Sechrist, & Pender, 1987), the Exercise Benefits/Barriers Scale (EBBS; Pender, Walker, & Sechrist, 1987), the Self-Efficacy for Exercise Scale (SEE Scale; Resnick & Jenkins, 2000), and the Physical Activity Stages of Change Questionnaire (Marcus, Selby, Niaura, & Rossi, 1992). Spearman Correlation coefficients (one-tailed tests), were used to identify significant characteristics of those participating in an HPL. These analyses revealed the students in this sample who engaged to a greater degree in an HPL, were more physically active, and also had a heightened sense of perceived self-efficacy pertaining to exercise. The highly efficacious students also identified fewer barriers to engaging in health promoting behaviors, and more benefits, as compared to their less active peers, and were currently in a more progressed physical activity stage of change. Because obesity on college campuses today has become an epidemic, negatively impacting both the physical and mental health of students, these findings encourage dialogue among those in helping roles at a university setting to come up with ways to assist and encourage students to engage in an HPL by addressing perceived barriers and strengthening perceived self-efficacy. Through discovering what increases the likelihood of students living an HPL, interventions to promote overall well-being and health in various domains can be designed and implemented across college campuses today. This could help universities produce more successful, motivated, and persistent young adults as they transition from academia to the workforce.



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