Gary T. Reker
I am interested in the investigation of quality of life across the entire life span, but with particular emphasis on the later years of life. I am an advocate of growth models of aging and the "salutogenic" approach, an orientation that focusses on positive, healthy development. I am particularly interested in the investigation of existential constructs such as personal meaning, personal optimism, and spirituality and their adaptive role in moderating and/or mediating between sources of stress and physical and mental health outcomes. I have a secondary interest in the development of measuring instruments in the areas of health, personality, personal meaning, death attitudes, stress, spirituality, and subjective well-being.
Reker, G. T. (2002). Prospective predictors of successful aging in community-residing and institutionalized Canadian elderly. Ageing International, 27, 42-64.
Reker, G. T. (2002). Provisional manual of the Spiritual Meaning Index (SMI-24). Trent University, Peterborough, ON: Student Psychologists Press.
Reker, G. T. (1997). Personal meaning, optimism, and choice: Existential predictors of depression in community and institutional elderly. The Gerontologist, 37, 709-716.
Reker, G. T. (1992). Manual of the Life Attitude Profile-Revised (LAP-R). Trent University, Peterborough, ON: Student Psychologists Press.
Reker, G. T. (1985a). Toward a holistic model of health, behavior, and aging. In J. E. Birren & J. Livingston (Eds.), Cognition, stress, and aging (pp. 47-71). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Reker, G. T. (1985b). Personal optimism, physical, and mental health: The triumph of successful aging. In J. E. Birren & J. Livingston (Eds.), Cognition, stress, and aging (pp. 134-173). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Reker, G. T., & Chamberlain, K. (Eds.)(2000), Exploring existential meaning: Optimizing human development across the life span. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Reker, G. T., & Fry, P. S. (2003). Factor structure and invariance of personal meaning measures in cohorts of younger and older adults. Personality and Individual Differences, 34, 1-17.
Reker, G. T. , Peacock, E. J., & Wong, P. T. P. (1987). Meaning and purpose in life and well- being: A life-span perspective. Journal of Gerontology, 42, 44-49.
Wong, P. T. P., Reker, G. T., & Gesser, G. (1994). The Death Attitude Profile-Revised (DAP- R): A multidimensional measure of attitudes toward death. In R. A. Neimeyer (Ed.), Death anxiety handbook: Research, instrumentation, and application (pp. 121-148). Washington, DC: Taylor and Francis.
Articles accepted, under review, or in progress
Reker, G. T. (under review). Meaning in life of young, middle-aged, and older adults: Factorial validity, age, and gender invariance of the Personal Meaning Index (PMI). Personality and Individual Differences.
Reker, G. T. (in progress). Spirituality, religiosity, and perceived well-being in early and late adulthood: The mediating role of personal meaning.
Reker, G. T. , & Leclerc, G. (in progress). Cultural, gender, and longitudinal invariance of the Personal Meaning Index (PMI) in English and French Canadian Elderly. Canadian Journal on Aging.
Reker, G. T., & Woo, L. (in progress). Personal meaning orientations and psychosocial adjustment in the elderly. International Journal of Aging and Human Development.
Society of America
Society of Peterborough and Victoria
List of Courses dealing with health issues
1. Adult Development
and Aging: Psychosocial Perspectives (PSY 363H)
SSHRC Committee on Research: "Personal meaning orientations and psychosocial adjustment in the elderly" ($3,284.00).