Researcher ORCID Identifier


Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Theodore Bartholomew

Reader 2

Jennifer Ma

Rights Information

2021 Candace Y Tsai


The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in unprecedented disruptions to daily routines and social connections, which negatively impacted the mental health and well-being of many. Unsurprisingly, the most utilized coping strategy during the pandemic involved social support. However, those low in self-esteem seem to question others’ positive regard and continued acceptance, and overall perceive others’ behavior more negatively than those with high self-esteem (Murray, Holmes, et al., 1998). The proposed correlational study will examine the effects of social support and self-esteem on stress, anxiety, and depression during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as investigate whether one’s self-esteem affects the influence that social support has. Participants will complete an online survey containing measures of social support, self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and stress. Both social support and self-esteem are expected to be negatively associated with levels of stress, depression, and anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, for those high in self-esteem, more social support is expected to be associated with less depression, anxiety, and stress during the pandemic. By contrast, for those low in self-esteem, more social support is expected to be associated with more depression, anxiety, and stress. These findings could inform public health officials about the importance of providing additional support and resources to those with low self-esteem or low social support, who might be more at-risk in developing mental health problems in times of crisis.