Sex, Education and Procrastination: An Epidemiological Study of Procrastinators' Characteristics from a Global Sample
Article first published online: 13 APR 2012
Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
European Journal of Personality
Volume 27, Issue 1, pages 51–58, January/February 2013
How to Cite
Steel, P. and Ferrari, J. (2013), Sex, Education and Procrastination: An Epidemiological Study of Procrastinators' Characteristics from a Global Sample. Eur. J. Pers., 27: 51–58. doi: 10.1002/per.1851
- Issue published online: 22 JAN 2013
- Article first published online: 13 APR 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 FEB 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 13 JAN 2012
- Manuscript Received: 15 NOV 2011
Procrastination is a common form of self-regulatory failure with substantive connections to lower levels of health, wealth and well-being. Conducting an epidemiological study, we determined the characteristics of prototypical procrastinators from a global sample based on several relevant self-reported demographic variables. Using an internet sampling strategy, we surveyed 16 413 English-speaking adults (58.3% women; 41.7% men: M age = 38.3 years, SD = 14), specifically on the variables of sex, age, marital status, family size, education, community location, and national origin. Almost all the results were statistically significant because of our large sample size. However, procrastination tendencies were most prominently associated with sex, age, marital status, education and nationality. Procrastinators tended to be young, single men with less education, residing in countries with lower levels of self-discipline. Notably, procrastination mediated the relationship between sex and education, providing further support that men are lagging behind women academically because of lower self-regulatory skills. Given procrastination's connection with a variety of societal ailments (e.g. excessive debt, delayed medical treatment), identifying risk factors and at risk populations should be helpful for directing preventative public policy. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.