The Marine Corps Basic Training Experience: Psychosocial Predictors of Performance, Health, and Attrition
NAVAL HEALTH RESEARCH CENTER SAN DIEGO CA
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This report describes one study in a series carried out to assess the effects of Marine Corps basic training BT stresses on male recruits. The present study was undertaken to identify individual differences which must be taken into account to accurately evaluate BT stress effects. Measures of 18 social background variables, 20 coping and defense mechanisms, 11 motivational variables, GCT, age, and race were obtained from 2,648 recruit volunteers. Results were a GCT was the primary predictor of performance race, Chance locus of control, high school grades, and having had to repeat a year of school were secondary predictors. b Health was not strongly related to and individual difference measure. c BT attrition was related to suppression, displacement, expected success in completing the first term of enlistment, intelligence GCT scores, and age. d Recruits with psychosocial profiles similar to those which predicted BT attrition were less successful in the FMF. e FMF attrition was also associated with less education and more frequency expulsion school. Displacement, suppression, enlistment expectations, age, and GCT scores represent the minimum set of individual differences which must be considered to ensure an accurate assessment of BT stress effects.
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