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This paper will relate to empirical research undertaken whilst studying for BA(Hons) in Applied Social Studies by Independent Study. The researchers are both nurses, and colleagues were among the participating subjects. The research took the form of applying the Rotter (1966) scale for internal versus external locus of control to three groups, namely smokers, non-smokers and ex-smokers. Previous studies have indicated that smokers have a more external locus of control than non-smokers. A sample of 60 subjects included 20 in each group (smokers, non-smokers and ex-smokers), of whom a high proportion were nurses and white collar workers within the 25–50 age group. Analysis of the results revealed that there was no significant difference between the scores of the three groups. However, when analysing the scores of nurses only there was a significant difference between smokers and non-smokers. Suggestions will be made as to why this difference in findings occurs.