Parham, Ellen S.
M.S. (Master of Science)
Department of Home Economics
This investigation compared the incidence of attrition and the reasons for withdrawal given by subjects from weight control and other self-improvement programs. Subjects who withdrew from a student weight control, community nonprofit and commercial weight control, student self-improvement, and commercial self-improvement programs participated in this investigation. The sample included eighty-nine subjects, forty-four from student and community weight control and forty-five from student and community self-improvement programs. The subjects were asked to respond to a questionnaire designed to assess their reasons for withdrawal and the weight change as evaluated by dieters in the weight control programs. The incidence of attrition was found to be higher for the weight control than for the other self-improvement programs. Computation of chi-square showed a highly significant difference at the .001 level, indicating rejection of the hypothesis that there is no significant difference in the incidence of attrition among the two types of programs. Subjects from weight control programs were found to withdraw more often due to personal/motivational reasons, whereas those from other self-improvement programs were shown to drop out more often for external/situational reasons. Analysis of the reasons for withdrawal using a chi-square test resulted in significance at the .001 level, indicating rejection of the hypothesis that there is no significant difference in the reasons for withdrawal given by subjects in the two types of programs. A relationship between the reasons given for withdrawal among dieters and their degree of weight change was also found. Those who lost a significant amount of body weight selected program related reasons most often. Those who lost only a small amount, had no change, or gained weight cited personal/motivational reasons most often as being responsible for their dropping out of the weight control programs. Kendall's Tau showed highly significant correlation at the .001 level of these two categories of reasons for withdrawal with degree of weight change. Personal/motivational reasons were found to be inversely correlated with weight loss, whereas program related reasons were shown to be directly correlated with weight loss. No association of external/situational reasons with weight loss was found. This finding indicated rejection of the hypothesis that there will be no relationship between the reasons given for withdrawal and degree of weight change.
Haase, Carolyn J., "Attrition: a comparison between weight control and other self-improvement programs" (1975). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 1581.
v, 64 pages
Northern Illinois University
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