A Critical Review Of The Hardiness Scales

Francesco Ceresia, Erika Maria Lo Sasso

Risultato della ricerca: Otherpeer review


INTRODUCTION: The construct of hardiness - structured in the control, commitment and challenge components - is a personality variable that allows individuals to respond effectively to stress demands, to perform better and to stay healthier.Individuals with high scores on these three factors show less powerlessness and alienation, interpret life events as controllable, interesting and as growth opportunities. Although in the last forty years many scholars had contributed to consolidate the hardiness theoretical framework, a substantial critical issue emerges with regard to the large heterogeneity of the scales used to measure hardiness. OBJECTIVE: The main aim of the study is to conduct a critical review about the evolution of hardiness scales, analyzing how scholars have operationalized and measured hardiness. We took three main steps to locate and identify eligible studies. First, using the search term “hardiness”, we conducted a literature search using PsycInfo, EBSCO and ISI Web of Knowledge. Second, we reviewed the references sections of the identified articles to locate additional studies. Third, we conducted database searches for articles referencing the most adopted hardiness scales. RESULTS: The results of this review show that, while several studies conducted on subjects exposed to high level of stress confirmed that hardiness is an importantpersonal resource for physical and mental health, excessively heterogeneous tools have been used to measure hardiness. From this point of view, it is possible to identify two main kind of hardiness scale: the indirect measure and the direct measure of hardiness. The indirect measures, proposed by the pioneering studies of Kobasa (1979), Kobasa et al. (1982) and Nowack (1986), are characterized by the attempts to measure hardiness through some not original personality validated scales. For example, to measure the control component of hardiness, Kobasa (1979) used the Internal-External Locus of Control Scale (Rotter et al., 1962), Powerlessness vs Personal Control e Nihilism vs Meaningfulness scale of Alienation Test (Maddi et al., 1978), Achievement and Dominance scale of Personality Research Form (Jackson, 1974) and Leadership Orientation scale of California Life Goals Evaluation Schedules (Hahn, 1966), whereas Nowack (1986) simply used the Locus of Control Scale (Rotter et al., 1962). To measure the commitment component of hardiness, Kobasa (1979) used Alienation Test (Maddi et al., 1978) and Role Consistency Test, adapted by Gergen & Morse (1967) Self-Consistency Test, whereas Nowack (1986) simplyused the Alienation from work scale by Alienation Test (Maddi et al., 1979). The direct measures represent instead the attempt of scholars to construct original and specific scales able to operationalize the three component of hardiness (Maddi & Khoshaba, 2001; Sinclair & Oliver, 2003; Maddi et al., 2006). However, even if these new scales show better internal consistency and validity, the lack of agreement about which scales have to be used to measure hardiness cast doubts about the construct validity of the hardiness subscales.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine1
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2018


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