Who is MAPP UK

Until now, there has been very little information regarding who our students were and what they had achieved before, during and after their time on MAPP. The following is a review of the PPQ “Who is MAPP UK?” survey that took place over the months of June to November, 2011. Participants were members of cohort 1,2,3,4 and 5, who identified as either full or part time status. The survey was intended for all students who had attended MAPP, where they had completed the full Msc. or not. Myself and colleague (now student) Julian Alexander conducted 2 information launches for both Cohort 4 and 5 in June 2011. All other cohorts (1, 2 &3) were contacted via email.In the end, several information and reminder emails were sent to all cohorts.

Overall, 81 participants started survey, however only 57 completed it fully = 69.5% completion rate. According to the expected participant uptake (approx 193), there was an overall 30% completion rate.

Below is the preliminary analysis of “Who is MAPP UK?” It will enable you to see where you relate to your fellow MAPP community and hopefully get you excited about participating in this new medium for keeping in touch with positive psychology (PPQ).


The majority of the respondents were from cohort 5 (31.9%), with Cohort 3 coming in second (26.1%), followed by 4 (21.7%), 2 (14.5%) and 1 (5.8%).

The mean average age of the respondents was 39.78 years of age. The median age was 40 and the mode = 50. The age range included 23- 60 years of age.

The majority of respondents (64.3%) identified as being either married or in a relationship, followed by 31.4% identifying as single, 2.9% divorced and 1.4% prefer not to respond.

Under religious affiliations, the majority identified as having ‘no religion’ (39%), followed by Christian (26%) and other (14%).

 62% identified as white British/Irish and another 24.6% identified as ‘other white’. 7.2% identified as Asian Indian/Pakastani/Bangledashi. 2.89% identified as Chinese, 1.44% identified as other and 1.4% preferred not to respond.

In terms of nationalities, the largest proportion of the class identified as British nationals, however there were respondents from several Scandinavian, European and Asian countries. The disappointment with these results stems from our anecdotal knowledge of many more nationalities that are not represented below.


Of the 69 who responded to this item, we can see that the MAPP community is a highly educated group with 14.5 % holding a degree (31.9% holding an honours degree) and 24.6% a Masters qualification.

What’s more interesting however is the discrepancy between the ‘years out of education’ among MAPP students. As you can see below, 28.9% of students were out of education between 0-1 years before entering MAPP. At the other end of the scale, 18.8 % had had been out of education for between 11-20 years and another 18.8% had been out for above 20 years! This made a total of 37.6% (over 1/3) returning to education (MAPP) after a significant break, with another 1/3 of the group returning with no break at all. This is an amazing finding for us, the lecturers, as we can be better informed as to the learning needs of our students.

Work and MAPP

Returning to education isn’t the only difficulty students face. The majority of respondents (72%) work full time whilst also undertaking the course. In terms of pre-MAPP occupations, the majority described their occupation as ‘professional’ (36.8%) followed by administrative (8.8%) and instructor (8.8%).

In relation to job changes during MAPP, 47.2% answered that they had switched jobs during their time on the course. Of the 47% that had changed jobs, the majority claimed that ‘MAPP was a powerful influence’ on their decision to change and 74% claimed that their new job was more in line with positive psychology.

Even more interesting, of the 52.8% who had NOT changed jobs during their time on the course, the majority replied that MAPP would be a decisive factor in their decision.

Example quotations

I went into MAPP thinking I wanted to apply the learning with individuals. MAPP opened my eyes to the potential for the application of positive psychology in organisations and this is the route I have taken. I now work in organisation development which I didn’t before I started the programme.

The portfolio, and goal setting specifically, made me evaluate my employment situation. I then quit my job and started a PhD.

MAPP and well-being

Overall, the MAPP well being scores fall within the expected distribution, with the majority scoring between 7-9 out of 10. Most enjoyable components on MAPP


We really wanted to know what you enjoyed most on the course so that we could feed this back into devotement of the course. ‘Learning new information’ was at the top of the list for most enjoyable components on MAPP (36.2%), followed by ‘expanding the self’ (27.6%), ‘classmates’ (17.2%), ‘lectures’ (13.8%) and ‘improving skill set’ (5.2%). We initially though that ‘classmates’ would be the top pick and although statistically they weren’t, in the open ended responses they seemed to be a major factor in the MAPP experience

I loved learning about all the different areas of pp through lectures and applying it personally and in other contexts (e.g. consultancy project). I also loved working with such a range of people in my cohort and making good friends.

There is no simple answer here. Classmates were marvellous. Also doing the course work and the learnings there from. Plus improved skill-set – so let’s call it expanding the self!

I think the course attracts a certain type of person that’s easy to get along with. Even if I do say so myself.

Most useful components in work

In sum, respondents felt that the most useful aspect to the course, with regards to work was ‘a widened knowledge base’. 


Example quotations

It is useful to have expanded knowledge but also to have the opportunity to learn and apply such knowledge practically. Discussion in class allows for the development of new ideas and directions that may not be possible otherwise, and promotes critical thinking which may then be transferred into written work.

I feel that I understand even better the work-related problems my colleagues are confronted with.

In terms of most useful components in life, respondents felt that ‘improved self awareness’ was the most beneficial aspect of the course. Furthermore, when asked to what extent MAPP had influenced their life, 44.1% responded ‘significantly’, followed by 25.4% ‘a great deal’, 23.7% ‘very little’, 5.1% ‘It determines my life’ and 1.7% ‘not at all’.

Example quotations

I have an improved sense of self and I am more aware of the way I interact with my world. Although I am also more aware of this in others. I have been helpful to friends and family but more so to myself and living the life I want to live

Studying MAPP has crucially changed my whole worldview and self-perception. I believe I managed to free myself from a fixed mindset and see more possibilities

Suggestions for MAPP

The last section of the survey focused on student suggestions for MAPP. 56% felt they had suggestions where as 44% had none. Of those that supplied suggestions, they included:

  • More interactive lectures (less standing, more doing)

  • Focus more on the applied element

  • More external speakers

  • More administration support

  • More group/team interactions (support groups)

  • Improved Logistics (print handouts, dates in advance)

Future of PPQ and survey

What we have shown here is a preliminary descriptive analysis of the PPQ survey “Who is MAPP UK?” We intend to cross compare the findings to UEL’s new database, Jasper that follows student completion rates and demographics over time. We also hope to continue collecting information as the years go on, adding to the dataset. Furthermore, the MAPP community is growing and we feel it would be interesting to use the data as a comparison for other MAPP programmes across the world.

Overall, we found his to be a hugely useful and inspiring look into who our students are and what they have done; informing us and future students of the community they are entering into

What would you like to know?

Were there any questions that you would have liked answered, such as:

  • What proportion of the cohort has children?

  • How many are coaches?

Send in your questions and we will do our best to add to any future surveys.

Would you like to comment?

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