Contingencies of Self-Worth and Global Self-Esteem Among College Women

The Role of Masculine and Feminine Traits Endorsement


  • Eugenia Mandal
  • Marcin Moroń Orcid


The study examined the relative importance of seven contingencies of self-worth of Polish college women's (appearance, others' approval, competition, academic competencies, family support, virtue, God's love), as well as the associations between preference for particular contingencies and global self-esteem. Additionally, the predictive role of the self-assignment of masculine and feminine traits for both contingencies of self-worth and global self-esteem was investigated. The participants were one hundred and ninety-four Polish women in emerging adulthood (aged from 19 to 26; M = 21.36; SD = 1.67). Participants provided self-reports of self-ascription of masculine and feminine traits, the contingencies of self-worth, and self-esteem. Obtained results showed that the family support contingency of self-worth was the most preferred one, followed by virtue contingent self-worth, academic competencies, competition, and appearance contingencies of selfesteem, while the less preferred contingencies were: others' approval and God's love. Appearance and others’ approval contingencies of self-worth correlated negatively with self-esteem. Masculine traits were positively linked to competition contingency of self-worth, but negatively to physical appearance self-worth contingency and others’ approval self-worth contingency, whereas feminine traits were positively correlated with both physical appearance self-worth contingency and others’ approval self-worth contingency. The findings showed the positive associations between selfascription of traits regarded to be masculine and self-esteem, and a lack of significant associations between self-description of feminine traits and self-esteem. Structural equation modeling demonstrated predictive role of masculine traits for self-esteem when feminine traits’ selfascription and contingencies of self-worth were controlled.