Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2016

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Boris Baltes


Managing competing demands from multiple life domains poses a significant challenge for today's workforce. In particular, employees who also have an active role at home often experience work-family conflict (WFC), which is associated with a number of negative outcomes. Research has shown that the selection, optimization, and compensation (SOC) set of coping strategies includes behaviors that tend to reduce WFC. However, it remains unknown how working spouses' use of these effective strategies "crossover" to influence the partner’s outcomes. Do individuals' use of SOC coping strategies reduce their spouse's experience of WFC? Using an emergent data analytic method—the actor-partner interdependence model using structural equation modeling—the present dissertation explored the effect of each spouse’s SOC on his/her own WFC (actor effects) while controlling for the partner effect, as well as the effect of each spouse’s SOC on the other spouse’s WFC (partner effects) while controlling for the actor effect. Results found good model fit for the proposed model and small but significant actor and partner effects. Importantly, partner effects represent effects above and beyond actor effects, suggesting the incremental validity of spouses’ SOC in predicting partner WFC. Practical implications, limitations, and future directions are discussed further.