The Well-Being Index

The measures used across the five dimensions of the Middle Years Development Instrument (MDI) provide important information about the well-being of children in the middle years. The Well-being Index represents a composite of five measures of child well-being: Happiness, Optimism, Self-Esteem, Absence of Sadness, and Overall Health. The Well-Being Index represents the percentage of children in each of three categories of well-being: 

Thriving

Children who score in the high range on at least 4 of the 5 measures of well-being and have no low-range scores are categorized into the High Well-Being “Thriving” category.

Medium Well-Being

Children who score in the high range on fewer than 4 of the 5 measures of well-being, and who have no low-range scores are categorized into the Medium Well-Being category.

Low Well-Being

Children who score in the low range on at least 1 of the 5 measures of well-being are categorized in the Low Well-Being category. This category then can serve as a way to identify the percentage of children who are experiencing difficulties in 1 or more areas of their life that contribute to their overall well-being.

For more detailed information on the measures included in the Physical Health and Well-Being dimension of the MDI including a full list of questions that contribute to each measure, how each measure is scored, and how the results are visualized, please consult the MDI Companion Guide.

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