Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name




First Advisor

Balance, W.


Psychology, Clinical.




The purpose of this study was twofold. First, to examine the previously reported moderating effects of humor on the relationship between stress and depression. Second, to examine in more detail than had been done previously the relationship between specific humor variables and overall depression as well as the relationship between specific depression variables and overall sense of humor. Participants were 244 university students who filled out the Multiscore Depression Inventory as a measure of depression, the Multidimensional Sense of Humor Scale as a measure of humor, and the Life Experiences Survey as a measure of negative life stress. A hierarchical multiple regression was conducted to test for the stress moderating effects of humor. Results indicated that negative life stress was significantly related to depression and that subjects with higher humor scores reported significantly less depression than did those with lower scores. In examining the relationship of various humor elements with overall depression it was found that each of these aspects of humor was significantly negatively related to depression. However, none of these variables independently predicted overall depression scores. In addition, in examining the relationship of various depression variables with overall humor it was found that only social introversion contributed independently to the prediction of overall humor. In other words, people who reported being more socially introverted had less of a sense of humor than those who did not report being socially introverted. These results and their relation to previous research were discussed and limitations of the present study as well as suggestions for future research were also presented.Dept. of Psychology. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis1996 .B43. Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 37-01, page: 0362. Adviser: William Balance. Thesis (M.A.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 1996.