Loyola University Chicago

Department of Psychology


Soyeon Kim

Training Track: Applied Social
Lab: Savoring Lab  
Advisor: Fred Bryant, Ph.D. 
Office: N/A
Webpage: LinkedIn 


My primary research interests are savoring and happiness in the field of positive psychology. I am currently studying the influence of culture on how people regulate positive emotional experiences.  

Masters Thesis Title

The Impact of Gender and Cultural Values on Savoring and Happiness among Korean College Students 

Masters Thesis Abstract

Historically, Korea has been strongly influenced by Chinese Confucianism, which emphasizes gender-role differentiation and patriarchal norms. Through globalization, however, Western values, which accentuate achievement and independence, have influenced Korean society and its emphasis on traditional values and sex roles. In particular, Korean females, relative to males, may gain more empowerment by rejecting traditional cultural values. Literature has shown that Asian cultures traditionally emphasize dampening rather than amplifying of positive emotions—a style of positive emotional regulation (i.e., savoring) that predicts lower reported levels of happiness. The present study examined gender differences in cultural values, savoring responses to positive experience, and happiness by testing a hypothesized structural path model, in which, Korean females, relative to males, more strongly rejected traditional Asian values, which predicted lower levels of dampening positive affects, which in turn predicted greater happiness. 

Masters Thesis Committee

Fred Bryant and R. Scott Tindale