Behavioral Research

Table of Contents
1 Definition and History
2 Methodological Issues
3 Measures and Measurements
4 Usefulness of Constructs and Measures
5 Conclusions
6 References

Measures Appendix

8 Published Examples

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Other Constructs



Dispositional Optimism




Illness Representations

  Implementation Intentions
  Intention, Expectation, and Willingness
  Normative Beliefs
  Optimistic Bias
  Perceived Benefits
  Perceived Control
  Perceived Severity
  Perceived Vulnerability
  Self-Reported Behavior
  Social Influence
  Social Support

Dispositional Optimism
Charles S. Carver

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Measures Appendix


Please be as honest and accurate as you can throughout. Try not to let your response to one statement influence your responses to other statements. There are no "correct" or "incorrect" answers. Answer according to your own feelings, rather than how you think "most people" would answer.

A = I agree a lot
B = I agree a little
C = I neither agree nor disagree
D = I DISagree a little
E = I DISagree a lot

1. In uncertain times, I usually expect the best.
[2. It's easy for me to relax.]
3. If something can go wrong for me, it will.
4. I'm always optimistic about my future.
[5. I enjoy my friends a lot.]
[6. It's important for me to keep busy.]
7. I hardly ever expect things to go my way.
[8. I don't get upset too easily.]
9. I rarely count on good things happening to me.
10. Overall, I expect more good things to happen to me than bad.

Note: Items 2, 5, 6, and 8 are fillers. Responses to "scored" items are to be coded so that high values imply optimism. Researchers interested in testing the potential difference between affirmation of optimism and disaffirmation of pessimism should compute separate subtotals of the relevant items.

HOPE SCALE (The Goals Scale)

Directions: Read each item carefully. Using the scale shown below, please select the number that best describes YOU and check that number in the space provided.

1 = Definitely False
2 = Mostly False
3 = Somewhat False
4 = Slightly False
5 = Slightly True
6 = Somewhat True
7 = Mostly True
8 = Definitely True

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1. I can think of many ways to get out of a jam.  
2. I energetically pursue my goals.  
3. I feel tired most of the time.  
4. There are lots of ways around any problem.  
5. I am easily downed in an argument.  
6. I can think of many ways to get the things in life that are most important to me.  
7. I worry about my health.  
8. Even when others get discouraged, I know I can find a way to solve the problem.  
9. My past experiences have prepared me well for my future.  
10. I've been pretty successful in life.  
11. I usually find myself worrying about something.  
12. I meet the goals that I have set for myself.  

Notes: When administered, the authors have called this the "Goals Scale" rather than the "Hope Scale." Items 3, 5, 7 & 11 are not used for scoring. The Pathways subscale score is the sum of items 1, 4, 6, & 8: the agency subscale is the sum of items 2, 9, 10 & 12. Hope is the sum of the 4 Pathways and 4 Agency items. The original studies used a 4-point response continuum (below), but to encourage more diversity in scores in more recent studies, the authors used the 8-point scale provided above.

1=Definitely False
2=Mostly False
3=Mostly True
4=Definitely True

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