Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Past research on body image has focused primarily on females, the drive for thinness, and the impact of the media and society upon the drive for thinness and body dissatisfaction. However, less research has examined body image in males and motivations for muscularity in both males and females. The purpose of this research was to examine how gender, involvement in a romantic relationship, and body mass index influence body image in late adolescence. Motivations, including the drive for muscularity and the drive for thinness; perceptions of discrepancies, including body satisfaction, perceived pressure, and ideal body stereotypes; and emotional factors, including self-esteem, body esteem, satisfaction with life, and depressive symptoms were explored. Results of the study show differences in motivations between genders; however, no difference in the drive for muscularity or drive for thinness was found based on relationship status or body mass index. Results also show differences in gender in body esteem, self-esteem, and depressive symptoms but not satisfaction with life. Differences depending on relationship status were also found to have an impact upon self-esteem, body esteem, and satisfaction with life but not depressive symptoms. Body mass index was not related to any of the emotional factors explored.


Janett Naylor

Date of Award

Spring 2007

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 2007 Kristen L. Goodheart


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