Student Affairs

Happiness as a Strategy for Student Success

Duration: 1 hour
Facilitator: Dr. Larry Marks
Price: $50.00

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Many students and student affairs professionals may underestimate how students’ happiness and well-being can be fundamental to their personal and academic success.  Positive psychology, the study of factors that contribute to happiness and well-being, provides a best practice framework for developing strategies to improve student success.  Research in positive psychology reveals that individuals’ self-rating of their well-being is associated with a number of positive effects including greater learning, productivity, goal achievement, high quality social relationships, and resiliency. 

Student affairs professionals can use this line of research by promoting student happiness and well-being with individual interventions and broader campus programming which tends to be a motivating and uplifting approach for students.  Through reviewing the science and practice of positive psychology, this webinar will address the connection between student happiness and well-being and student success.  Specific practical and impactful strategies to use with students related to the concepts of meaning and purpose, individual strengths, and positive emotions will be discussed as opportunities for increasing student happiness and well-being.


What is student happiness and student well-being?

  • Assessing happiness and well-being.
  • The role of happiness and well-being in student success.

Brief introduction to positive psychology.

  • What it is and what it is not.
  • Positive psychology constructs.
  • Cultural considerations with happiness and positive psychology.

Improving student well-being.

Connecting students to meaning and purpose.

  • Ways of uncovering meaning and purpose in student goals.

Developing strengths.

  • Strategies for identifying, exploring, and using strengths.

Positive Emotions.

  • Defining the Broaden and Build Theory.
  • Practical interventions for increasing positive emotions.

Learning Outcomes:

  • List factors related to happiness and well-being.
  • Describe the connection between happiness/well-being and student success, and how this can be applied on campus.
  • Understand the fundamental principles within positive psychology.
  • Develop ways of discussing meaning and purpose with students.
  • Learn strategies for working with student strengths.
  • Explain several interventions for increasing positive emotions.

Who Should Attend:

New, mid-level, and senior professionals in student affairs whose focus is related to developing student success.


Dr. Larry Marks is a licensed psychologist at the University of Central Florida’s Counseling and Psychological Services.  He has worked in student affairs for over 20 years and has extensive experience providing individual and group counseling and coaching.  Dr. Marks has conducted over 300 presentations focusing on college student mental health and well-being, including positive psychology applications.  His research and scholarly work has resulted in numerous journal publications and professional presentations.  He co-edited Positive Psychology on the College Campus published by Oxford University Press in 2015, and wrote a chapter in the book on life coaching with students.

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