This page is work in progress – therefore, I am very much open to extending this list. If you feel something should be included, please shoot me an e-mail or write a comment, ideally providing the APA style citation and a link to a PDF. Additionally, please notify me if you find dead links etc. Enjoy – and please share!
Groundbreaking and/or highly-cited Positive Psychology Articles
Bandura, A. (1982). Self-efficacy mechanism in human agency. American Psychologist, 37(2), 122-147.
Brown, K. W., & Ryan, R. M. (2003). The benefits of being present: mindfulness and its role in psychological well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84(4), 822-848.
Cooperrider, D. L., & Srivastva, S. (1987). Appreciative inquiry in organizational life. Research in Organizational Change and Development, 1(1), 129-169.
Csikszentmihalyi, M., & LeFevre, J. (1989). Optimal experience in work and leisure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 56(5), 815-822.
Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2000). The “what” and “why” of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self-determination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11(4), 227-268.
- Diener, E. (1984). Subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 95(3), 542-575.
Diener, E. (2000). Subjective well-being: The science of happiness and a proposal for a national index. American Psychologist, 55(1), 34-43.
Diener, E., Suh, E. M., Lucas, R. E., & Smith, H. L. (1999). Subjective well-being: Three decades of progress. Psychological Bulletin, 125(2), 276-302.
Duckworth, A. L., & Seligman, M. E. (2005). Self-discipline outdoes IQ in predicting academic performance of adolescents. Psychological Science, 16(12), 939-944.
Dunn, E. W., Aknin, L. B., & Norton, M. I. (2008). Spending money on others promotes happiness. Science, 319(5870), 1687-1688.
Emmons, R. A., & McCullough, M. E. (2003). Counting blessings versus burdens: an experimental investigation of gratitude and subjective well-being in daily life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84(2), 377-389.
Fredrickson, B. L. (1998). What good are positive emotions? Review of General Psychology, 2(3), 300-319.
Fredrickson, B. L. (2001). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions psychology. American Psychologist, 56(3), 218-226.
Gable, S. L., Reis, H. T., Impett, E. A., & Asher, E. R. (2004). What do you do when things go right? The intrapersonal and interpersonal benefits of sharing positive events. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87(2), 228-245.
Haidt, J. (2001). The emotional dog and its rational tail: a social intuitionist approach to moral judgment. Psychological Review, 108(4), 814-834.
Kabat-Zinn, J. (1982). An outpatient program in behavioral medicine for chronic pain patients based on the practice of mindfulness meditation: Theoretical considerations and preliminary results. General Hospital Psychiatry, 4(1), 33-47.
Kahneman, D. (2003). A perspective on judgment and choice: mapping bounded rationality. American Psychologist, 58(9), 697-720.
Kasser, T., & Ryan, R. M. (1993). A dark side of the American dream: correlates of financial success as a central life aspiration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65(2), 410-422.
King, L. A., Hicks, J. A., Krull, J. L., & Del Gaiso, A. K. (2006). Positive affect and the experience of meaning in life. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 90(1), 179-196.
Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (2002). Building a practically useful theory of goal setting and task motivation: A 35-year odyssey. American Psychologist, 57(9), 705-717.
Luthans, F. (2002). The need for and meaning of positive organizational behavior. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 23(6), 695-706.
Lyubomirsky, S., Sheldon, K. M., & Schkade, D. (2005). Pursuing happiness: The architecture of sustainable change. Review of General Psychology, 9(2), 111-131.
Lyubomirsky, S., King, L., & Diener, E. (2005). The benefits of frequent positive affect: Does happiness lead to success? Psychological Bulletin, 131(6), 803-855.
Park, N., Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. (2004). Strengths of character and well-being. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 23(5), 603-619.
Peterson, C. (2000). The future of optimism. American Psychologist, 55(1), 44-55.
Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2000). Self-determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well-being. American Psychologist, 55(1), 68-78.
Ryan, R. M., & Deci, E. L. (2001). On happiness and human potentials: A review of research on hedonic and eudaimonic well-being. Annual Review of Psychology, 52(1), 141-166.
Ryff, C. D. (1989). Happiness is everything, or is it? Explorations on the meaning of psychological well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57(6), 1069-1081.
Ryff, C. D., & Keyes, C. L. M. (1995). The structure of psychological well-being revisited. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 69(4), 719-727.
Scheier, M. F., & Carver, C. S. (1985). Optimism, coping, and health: assessment and implications of generalized outcome expectancies. Health Psychology, 4(3), 219-247.
Schwartz, B., Ward, A., Monterosso, J., Lyubomirsky, S., White, K., & Lehman, D. R. (2002). Maximizing versus satisficing: happiness is a matter of choice. Journal of Personality and Social psychology, 83(5), 1178-1197.
Seligman, M. E., & Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2000). Positive psychology: An introduction. American Psychologist, 55(1), 5-14.
Seligman, M. E., Ernst, R. M., Gillham, J., Reivich, K., & Linkins, M. (2009). Positive education: Positive psychology and classroom interventions. Oxford Review of Education, 35(3), 293-311.
Seligman, M. E., Rashid, T., & Parks, A. C. (2006). Positive psychotherapy. American Psychologist, 61(8), 774-788.
Seligman, M. E., Steen, T. A., Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2005). Positive psychology progress: empirical validation of interventions. American Psychologist, 60(5), 410-421.
Sheldon, K. M., & Elliot, A. J. (1999). Goal striving, need satisfaction, and longitudinal well-being: the self-concordance model. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 76(3), 482-497.
Steel, P., Schmidt, J., & Shultz, J. (2008). Refining the relationship between personality and subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 134(1), 138-161.
Tedeschi, R. G., & Calhoun, L. G. (2004). Posttraumatic growth: Conceptual foundations and empirical evidence. Psychological Inquiry, 15(1), 1-18.
Wilson, T. D., & Gilbert, D. T. (2003). Affective forecasting: Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 35, 345-411.
Wrzesniewski, A., & Dutton, J. E. (2001). Crafting a job: Revisioning employees as active crafters of their work. Academy of Management Review, 26(2), 179-201.
Articles on Positive Education
- Froh, J. J., Sefick, W. J., & Emmons, R. A. (2008). Counting blessings in early adolescents: An experimental study of gratitude and subjective well-being. Journal of School Psychology, 46(2), 213-233.
- Gillham, J. E., Reivich, K. J., Freres, D. R., Chaplin, T. M., Shatté, A. J., Samuels, B., … & Seligman, M. E. (2007). School-based prevention of depressive symptoms: A randomized controlled study of the effectiveness and specificity of the Penn Resiliency Program. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75(1), 9-19.
- Green, S., Grant, A. M., & Rynsaardt, J. (2007). Evidence-based life coaching for senior high school students: Building hardiness and hope. International Coaching Psychology Review, 2(1), 24-32.
- Huppert, F. A., & Johnson, D. M. (2010). A controlled trial of mindfulness training in schools: The importance of practice for an impact on well-being. Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(4), 264-274.
Marques, S. C., Lopez, S. J., & Pais-Ribeiro, J. L. (2011). “Building hope for the future”: A program to foster strengths in middle-school students. Journal of Happiness Studies, 12(1), 139-152.
Noble, T., & McGrath, H. (2008). The positive educational practices framework: A tool for facilitating the work of educational psychologists in promoting pupil wellbeing. Educational and Child Psychology, 25(2), 119-134.
Norrish, J. M., Williams, P., O’Connor, M., & Robinson, J. (2013). An applied framework for positive education. International Journal of Wellbeing, 3(2), 147-161.
- Oades, L. G., Robinson, P., Green, S., & Spence, G. B. (2011). Towards a positive university. Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(6), 432-439.
Proctor, C., Tsukayama, E., Wood, A. M., Maltby, J., Eades, J. F., & Linley, P. A. (2011). Strengths gym: The impact of a character strengths-based intervention on the life satisfaction and well-being of adolescents. Journal of Positive Psychology, 6(5), 377-388.
- Seligman, M. E., Ernst, R. M., Gillham, J., Reivich, K., & Linkins, M. (2009). Positive education: Positive psychology and classroom interventions. Oxford Review of Education, 35(3), 293-311.
- Waters, L. (2011). A review of school-based positive psychology interventions. Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist, 28(2), 75-90.
Weber, M., & Ruch, W. (2012). The role of a good character in 12-year-old school children: do character strengths matter in the classroom? Child Indicators Research, 5(2), 317-334.
White, M. A., & Waters, L. E. (2015). A case study of ‘The Good School:’Examples of the use of Peterson’s strengths-based approach with students. Journal of Positive Psychology, 10(1), 69-76.
Articles on Positive Psychotherapy
- Duckworth, A. L., Steen, T. A., & Seligman, M. E. (2005). Positive psychology in clinical practice. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology., 1, 629-651.
- Rashid, T. (2015). Positive psychotherapy: A strength-based approach. Journal of Positive Psychology, 10(1), 25-40.
- Seligman, M. E., Rashid, T., & Parks, A. C. (2006). Positive psychotherapy. American Psychologist, 61(8), 774-788.
- Sin, N. L., & Lyubomirsky, S. (2009). Enhancing well-being and alleviating depressive symptoms with positive psychology interventions: A practice-friendly meta-analysis. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 65(5), 467-487.
- Wood, A. M., & Tarrier, N. (2010). Positive Clinical Psychology: A new vision and strategy for integrated research and practice. Clinical Psychology Review, 30, 819-829.
Articles on Positive Organizational Scholarship and the Link of Wellbeing and Success/Performance
- Bono, J. E., & Judge, T. A. (2003). Self-concordance at work: Toward understanding the motivational effects of transformational leaders. Academy of Management Journal, 46(5), 554-571.
- Cameron, K., Mora, C., Leutscher, T., & Calarco, M. (2011). Effects of positive practices on organizational effectiveness. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 47(3), 266-308.
- Csikszentmihalyi, M., & LeFevre, J. (1989). Optimal experience in work and leisure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 56(5), 815-822.
- Deci, E. L., Koestner, R., & Ryan, R. M. (1999). A meta-analytic review of experiments examining the effects of extrinsic rewards on intrinsic motivation. Psychological Bulletin, 125(6), 627-668.
- Donaldson, S. I., & Ko, I. (2010). Positive organizational psychology, behavior, and scholarship: A review of the emerging literature and evidence base. Journal of Positive Psychology, 5(3), 177-191.
- Duckworth, A. L., Peterson, C., Matthews, M. D., & Kelly, D. R. (2007). Grit: perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92(6), 1087-1101.
- Edmans, A. (2011). Does the stock market fully value intangibles? Employee satisfaction and equity prices. Journal of Financial Economics, 101(3), 621-640.
- Fisher, C. D. (2010). Happiness at work. International Journal of Management Reviews, 12(4), 384-412.
- Gable, S. L., Reis, H. T., Impett, E. A., & Asher, E. R. (2004). What do you do when things go right? The intrapersonal and interpersonal benefits of sharing positive events. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87(2), 228-245.
- Grant, A. M., Curtayne, L., & Burton, G. (2009). Executive coaching enhances goal attainment, resilience and workplace well-being: A randomised controlled study. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(5), 396-407.
- Grant, A. M., Campbell, E. M., Chen, G., Cottone, K., Lapedis, D., & Lee, K. (2007). Impact and the art of motivation maintenance: The effects of contact with beneficiaries on persistence behavior. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 103(1), 53-67.
- Heaphy, E. D., & Dutton, J. E. (2008). Positive social interactions and the human body at work: Linking organizations and physiology. Academy of Management Review, 33(1), 137-162.
- Judge, T. A., & Bono, J. E. (2001). Relationship of core self-evaluations traits—self-esteem, generalized self-efficacy, locus of control, and emotional stability—with job satisfaction and job performance: A meta-analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86(1), 80-92.
- Kaplan, S., Bradley, J. C., Luchman, J. N., & Haynes, D. (2009). On the role of positive and negative affectivity in job performance: a meta-analytic investigation. Journal of Applied Psychology, 94(1), 162-176.
- Luthans, F., Avey, J. B., Avolio, B. J., & Peterson, S. J. (2010). The development and resulting performance impact of positive psychological capital. Human Resource Development Quarterly, 21(1), 41-67.
- Lyubomirsky, S., King, L., & Diener, E. (2005). The benefits of frequent positive affect: does happiness lead to success?. Psychological Bulletin, 131(6), 803-855.
- Meyers, M. C., van Woerkom, M., & Bakker, A. B. (2013). The added value of the positive: A literature review of positive psychology interventions in organizations. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 22(5), 618-632.
- Peterson, C., & Park, N. (2006). Character strengths in organizations. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 27(8), 1149-1154.
- Rosso, B. D., Dekas, K. H., & Wrzesniewski, A. (2010). On the meaning of work: A theoretical integration and review. Research in Organizational Behavior, 30, 91-127.
- Sheldon, K. M., & Elliot, A. J. (1999). Goal striving, need satisfaction, and longitudinal well-being: the self-concordance model. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 76(3), 482-497.
- Spreitzer, G., Sutcliffe, K., Dutton, J., Sonenshein, S., & Grant, A. M. (2005). A socially embedded model of thriving at work. Organization Science, 16(5), 537-549.
- Taris, T. W., & Schreurs, P. J. (2009). Well-being and organizational performance: An organizational-level test of the happy-productive worker hypothesis. Work & Stress, 23(2), 120-136.
- Wright, T. A., & Cropanzano, R. (2000). Psychological well-being and job satisfaction as predictors of job performance. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 5(1), 84-94.
- Wright, T. A., Cropanzano, R., & Bonett, D. G. (2007). The moderating role of employee positive well being on the relation between job satisfaction and job performance. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 12(2), 93-104.
- Wrzesniewski, A., & Dutton, J. E. (2001). Crafting a job: Revisioning employees as active crafters of their work. Academy of Management Review, 26(2), 179-201.
- Zelenski, J. M., Murphy, S. A., & Jenkins, D. A. (2008). The happy-productive worker thesis revisited. Journal of Happiness Studies, 9(4), 521-537.
Positive Psychology Scales and Constructs
Wood, A. M., Linley, P. A., Maltby, J., Baliousis, M., & Joseph, S. (2008). The authentic personality: A theoretical and empirical conceptualization and the development of the Authenticity Scale. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 55(3), 385-399.
Hwang, J. Y., Plante, T., & Lackey, K. (2008). The development of the Santa Clara Brief Compassion Scale: An abbreviation of Sprecher and Fehr’s compassionate love scale. Pastoral Psychology, 56(4), 421-428.
Radloff, L. S. (1977). The CES-D scale a self-report depression scale for research in the general population. Applied Psychological Measurement, 1(3), 385-401.
Chen, G., Gully, S. M., & Eden, D. (2001). Validation of a new general self-efficacy scale. Organizational Research Methods, 4(1), 62-83.
McCullough, M. E., Emmons, R. A., & Tsang, J. A. (2002). The grateful disposition: a conceptual and empirical topography. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82(1), 112-127.
Duckworth, A. L., & Quinn, P. D. (2009). Development and validation of the Short Grit Scale (GRIT–S). Journal of Personality Assessment, 91(2), 166-174.
Lyubomirsky, S., & Lepper. H. S. (1999): A measure of subjective happiness: Preliminary reliability and construct validation. Social Indicators Research, 46(2), 137-155.
Meaning in Life
Steger, M. F., Frazier, P., Oishi, S., & Kaler, M. (2006). The meaning in life questionnaire: Assessing the presence of and search for meaning in life. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 53(1), 80-93.
Scheier, M. F., Carver, C. S., & Bridges, M. W. (1994). Distinguishing optimism from neuroticism (and trait anxiety, self-mastery, and self-esteem): a reevaluation of the Life Orientation Test. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 67(6), 1063-1078.
Butler, J., & Kern, M. L. (2014). The PERMA-Profiler: A brief measure of flourishing. Unpublished manuscript.
Positive and Negative Affect (PANAS)
Watson, D., Clark, L. A., & Tellegen, A. (1988). Development and validation of brief measures of positive and negative affect: the PANAS scales. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54(6), 1063-1070.
SPANE – see: Diener, E., Wirtz, D., Tov, W., Kim-Prieto, C., Choi, D. W., Oishi, S., & Biswas-Diener, R. (2010). New well-being measures: Short scales to assess flourishing and positive and negative feelings. Social Indicators Research, 97(2), 143-156.
Tedeschi, R. G., & Calhoun, L. G. (1996). The Posttraumatic Growth Inventory: Measuring the positive legacy of trauma. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 9(3), 455-471.
Satisfaction with Life (SWLS)
Diener, E. D., Emmons, R. A., Larsen, R. J., & Griffin, S. (1985). The satisfaction with life scale. Journal of Personality Assessment, 49(1), 71-75.
Neff, K. D. (2003). The development and validation of a scale to measure self-compassion. Self and Identity, 2(3), 223-250.
Rosenberg, M. (1979). Rosenberg self-esteem scale. New York: Basic Books.
Pearlin, L. I., & Schooler, C. (1978). The structure of coping. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 19(2), 2-21.
Thriving at Work
Additional Questionnaire Resources
- You can take a lot of questionnaires for free via Authentic Happiness, Martin Seligman´s website.
- You´ll find numerous questionnaires that are used in research on self-determination theory (SDT) here.
- The Measurement Instrument Database for the Social Sciences (MIDSS) is a great database that lets you search for scales via keywords. It provides the items and key references for (literally) tons of measures.