Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work (MSW)


Social Work


Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work

First Advisor

Marshall Fine

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Humour has been postulated to be an important variable contributing to success in romantic relationships. Most past research has tended to view humour as a unitary construct with invariably beneficial relationship effects (e.g., Hampes, 1992). However, if used maladaptively, humour may be a detriment to relationship success (Cohan and Bradbury, 1997). The purpose of the current study was to determine the relationship between adaptive/positive and maladaptive/negative styles of humour and quality of marriage. It was expected that positive humour is associated with higher marital quality, while negative humour is associated with lower marital quality. A secondary goal was to examine possible variations in the relation between humour and marital quality according to demographic differences. Over 450 participants from around the world completed the study over the internet, completing two humour scales and a measure of marital quality. Results came out as expected, although the correlation was much stronger with the humour scale that is more pertinent to marriage than the humour scale that assesses individual humour in a general manner. In addition, various interactions were explored using demographic (moderator) variables, and results are discussed.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season