Research has shown that people with an internal locus of control perform better in school and have better overall mental health than people with an external locus of control (Lang & Heckhausen, 2001 ; Prociuk & Preen, 1974). Internals believe they possess control over their life whereas externals believe that luck or powerful others control their life. The objective of this study was to examine college students' perceptions of internals' and externals' stress, anxiety, and depression levels. Participants were 59 men and 129 women from a small northeast college. After reading scenarios about characters with internal or external characteristics and varying grade point averages, the participants rated externals to be more stressed, more anxious, and more depressed than internals. There was a moderate correlation between participants' level of stress and their locus of control. Specifically, the less stressed participants were, the more internal they rated themselves.
Cote, Erin and Rossi, Jennifer
"The Perceived Effects of Locus of Control and Academic Achievement on Stress, Anciety, and Depression of Late Adolescents,"
FSU Journal of Behavioral Sciences:
1, Article 9.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.framingham.edu/journal_of_behavioral_sciences/vol8/iss1/9