An examination of the construct validity of coping dispositions for a sample of recently divorced mothers

Alex J. Zautra, Virgil L. Sheets, Irwin Sandler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examined the construct validity of the assessment of coping dispositions. Recently divorced mothers (ns = 169-203) were assessed on 11 dimensions of coping, the number of major and small life stressors, and psychological distress on 2 occasions, 5.5 months apart. Confirmatory factor analyses supported the presence of 4 related dimensions of coping: Active Coping, Cognitive Restructuring, Social Support Seeking, and Avoidance. Active Coping was associated with less distress, but this relationship was modest in size and did not hold over time. Avoidance was consistently associated with greater distress in the cross-sectional analyses, but there was also evidence that psychological distress and small stressful events were 'causes' of increased avoidance. In summary, the results failed to provide uniform support for coping dispositions as currently assessed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)256-264
Number of pages9
JournalPsychological Assessment
Volume8
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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