Longitudinal Effects of Hope on Depression and Anxiety: A Latent Variable Analysis


  • Randolph C. Arnau, Department of Psychology, The University of Southern Mississippi. David H. Rosen, Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University. John F. Finch, Department of Biostatistics, University of California, Los Angeles. Jamie L. Rhudy, Department of Psychology, University of Tulsa. Vincent Fortunato, Department of Psychology, Boise State University.

  • Portions of this article were presented at the 2002 meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.

concerning this article should be addressed to Randolph C. Arnau, University of Southern Mississippi, Department of Psychology, 118 College Drive #5025, Hattiesburg, MS 39406-5025. E-mail: Randolph.Arnau@usm.edu.


ABSTRACT This study tested the prospective effects of hope on depression and anxiety using a longitudinal design. A sample of 522 college students completed self-report measures of hope, depression, and anxiety at three time points, with 1-month delays between administrations. Structural equation modeling was employed to test two cross-lagged panel models of the reciprocal effects of the Agency and Pathways components of hope on depression and anxiety. Results indicated statistically significant negative effects for the Agency component of hope on later depression but no unique effect of the Pathways component of hope on depression. Likewise, Agency showed a statistically significant negative effect on later anxiety, but again Pathways had no significant influence on anxiety. In both cases, neither depression nor anxiety demonstrated any longitudinal effects on either the Agency or Pathways components of hope. Implications of these findings are discussed, along with potential directions for future research.