An examination of research efforts that have contributed to an understanding of the elements which comprise the "Quality of Life" for individuals; and a proposal for a research project to further sharpen the definition of the term and to provide a systematic framework for tying together a vast amount of information about the perceived well-being of present-day Americans. The proposal is to prepare a comprehensive set of relevant scales; let a large sample rate themselves via confidential interviews; and employ factor analysis to summarize the interrelations between the ratings. Pros and cons of the proposal are considered. 24 pp. Refs.