Understanding and Expressing Gratitude: Perspectives of Eighth-Grade Students
In gratitude research, relatively few studies consider how youth conceptualize and experience gratitude. In this mixed-methods study, we present qualitative descriptions of how eighth-grade students understand the function of gratitude, the ways in which they express gratitude, and whether gratitude is a salient quality among them. We also examine how these descriptions compare with the students’ responses on an adapted gratitude self-report measure – Gratitude Questionnaire-6. This paper illuminates the components of gratitude that the GQ-6 is measuring and the areas in which interview material contributes information about respondents’ orientations to gratitude that is not captured by the survey measure.