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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 44  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 157-162

Locus of control among university students with urban and rural background


1 Psychiatry Department, Faculty of Science, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
2 Immunology and Biotechnology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Tanta University, Tanta; Center of Excellence in Cancer Research, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt
3 Immunology Department, Faculty of Science, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
4 Oncology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Eman M El-Baiomy
Immunology Department, Faculty of Science, Cairo University, Cairo, 3500539
Egypt
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DOI: 10.4103/1110-1415.201721

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Background Locus of control (LOC), a psychological theory developed by Julian Rotter (1966), refers to the extent to which an individual believes in controlling the events affecting them. The effect of environment and sex on LOC belief differs from country to country. Aim The aim of the present study was to evaluate LOC belief in a population of university students and the impact of urban versus rural background and sex. Participants and methods Data were collected from a cross-sectional study among university students in Egypt. Two scales were used to measure LOC belief. The first is the Rotter Internal–External Locus of Control (I–E LOC) to measure belief in LOC according to general life. The second is the Multidimensional Health Locus of Control scale with five dimensions: Internal Health Locus of Control, Doctor Health Locus of Control, Powerful Other Health Locus of Control, Chance Health Locus of Control, and God Health Locus of Control to measure belief in LOC according to health. Results Urban population had a significantly higher Doctor Health Locus of Control (mean±SD=15.61±1.91) compared with rural population (mean±SD=14.16±3.38). Rural population had a higher I–E LOC score (mean±SD=8.37±3.24) compared with urban population (mean±SD=6.75±4.14). Women had a significantly higher Powerful Other Health Locus of Control (mean±SD=12.8±3.55) compared with men (mean±SD=10.27±2.84). Women had a significantly higher I–E LOC (high external LOC) (mean±SD=9.6±3.09) compared with men (mean±SD=10.6.33±4.42). Conclusion The findings show that urban population has higher belief in doctor as a controller of health compared with the rural one. Rural population has more external LOC belief in general life compared with the urban population. Women have more external LOC in general life compared with men. Women have higher belief in powerful others as a controller of their life compared with men.


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