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Project 2 - Daily Stress/ NSDE
MIDUS 2 DAILY STRESS PROJECT, 2004-2009
The Daily Stress study is Project 2 of the MIDUS longitudinal study, a national survey of more than 7,000 Americans (aged 25 to 74) began in 1994. The purpose of the larger study was to investigate the role of behavioral, psychological, and social factors in understanding age-related differences in physical and mental health. With support from the National Institute on Aging, a longitudinal follow-up of the original MIDUS samples [core sample (n = 3,487), metropolitan over-samples (n = 757), twins (n = 957 pairs), and siblings (n = 950)] was conducted in 2004-2006. Guiding hypotheses, at the most general level, were that behavioral and psychosocial factors are consequential for health (physical and mental).
The Daily Stress Project of MIDUS 2 contains data from 2,022 respondents. These respondents include three distinct groups, all of whom completed the Project 1 Survey: (1) longitudinal (n = 794), (2) expanded (n = 1,048), and (3) Milwaukee (n = 180). The longitudinal group included individuals who participated in the Daily Stress Project at Time 1, the expanded group consisted of Time 2 participants from all MIDUS subsamples (RDD, twins, siblings) who did not participate in the Daily Stress Project at Time 1, and the Milwaukee group contained individuals who participated in the baseline MIDUS Milwaukee study, initiated in 2005. The purpose of the Daily Stress Project was to examine how sociodemographic factors, health status, personality characteristics, and genetic endowment modify patterns of change in exposure to day-to-day life stressors as well as physical and emotional reactivity to these stressors. The primary aims were to: (1) describe how the links between multiple aspects of daily stressors (e.g., frequency, content, severity) and daily physical and emotional well-being change over ten years during adulthood; (2) examine how sociodemographic factors and personality characteristics influence change in both exposure to as well as changes in physical and emotional reactivity to daily stressors; (3) investigate how exposure and reactivity to daily stressors correlate with physiological indicators of physical health and predict changes in global health reports; and (4) explore the relative genetic and environmental influences mediating change in exposure and physical and emotional reactivity to daily stressors throughout adulthood. Respondents in the NSDE are a representative subsample of the MIDUS (Midlife in the United States) survey.
MIDUS 1 NATIONAL STUDY OF DAILY EXPERIENCES (NSDE), March 1996-April 1997
The National Study of Daily Experiences (NSDE) is one of the in-depth studies that are part of the MacAuthur Foundation National Survey of Midlife in the United States (MIDUS 1). The purpose of the NSDE is to examine the day-to-day lives, particularly the daily stressful experiences, of a subsample of MIDUS respondents. Although previous daily diary research has advanced understanding of daily stress processes, there are important limitations in these studies that are addressed in the NSDE. First, previous studies in this area have relied on small and often unrepresentative samples that limit the ability to generalize findings. For this reason, the NSDE uses a large national sample of adults in the United States. Second, previous studies of individual differences in exposure and reactivity to daily events have typically examined only one source of variability, such as personality, to the exclusion of others. The NSDE corrects this problem by utilizing the data collected in the larger MIDUS survey on a wide array of sociodemographic and psychosocial variables to study the determinants of exposure and reactivity to daily stress. Third, previous studies have failed to investigate the role of genetics in both exposure and reactivity to daily stressors. The NSDE has a subsample of identical and fraternal same-sex twin pairs in order to explore this issue. The twins were selected if twin pairs had high self-reported certainty of zyogosity, had completed the MIDUS interview and questionnaires, and had mailed in their cheek cell samples. A wide range of information was obtained using the daily telephone interview. Conducting interviews for an entire year provided information about seasonal variation in daily experiences. Respondents completed an average of 7.2 of the 8 interviews resulting in a total of 10,397 days of interviews. Data collection consisted of 40 separate "flights" of interviews with each flight representing the eight-day sequence of interviews from approximately 33 respondents. The entire interview was CATI programmed, which enabled researchers to incorporate skip patterns and open-ended probe questions as well as to keypunch data during the interview, allowing data cleaning throughout the data collection.