Self-perception of aging and health among older adults in Korea

Yuri Jang, Leonard W. Poon, Soo Young Kim, Bok Ki Shin

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52 Scopus citations


The way that each individual perceives his or her own aging and health may be a key indicator of adaptation and well-being in old age. This study explored the determinants of self-perception of aging and health using 291 community-dwelling older adults in Korea (mean age=69.9). Older individuals with lower levels of education and economic status and various types of health problems (more chronic conditions, greater disability, poorer vision, and greater numbers of sick days) were found to have more negative self-perception of aging and health. In addition, a significant role of psychological factors was observed. For self-perception of health, sense of mastery was found to be a significant factor, and for self-perception of aging, neuroticism was observed to be significant along with sense of mastery. The mediating role of self-perception of health was supported that positive perception of health intervened the adverse effects of health problems on self-perception of aging. The findings demonstrate the important roles of psychological resources and subjective perceptions and suggest a need to consider them when planning interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-496
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Aging Studies
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the grant from the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI). Additional support was provided by the Gerontology Center, University of Georgia. The authors would like to thank all study participants and interviewers who made this research possible. Special appreciation goes to Emily Bower at the UGA Gerontology Center who conducted data entry task.


  • Korea
  • Mastery
  • Neuroticism
  • Self-perception of aging and health


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