Measuring Use of Positive Thinking Skills: Psychometric Testing of a New Scale

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Positive thinking interventions improve adaptive functioning and quality of life in many populations. However, no direct measure of positive thinking skills taught during intervention exists. This psychometric study of a convenience sample of 109 autism spectrum disorder (ASD) caregivers examined a new eight-item Positive Thinking Skills Scale (PTSS), which measures the frequency of use of positive thinking skills. The PTSS was found to be internally consistent (α = .90). Construct validity was supported by significant correlations (p < .01) with positive cognitions (r = .53), resourcefulness (r = .63), depression (r = -.45), and general well-being (r = .40). The findings support use of the PTSS as a potential indicator of intervention fidelity among ASD caregivers. However, because it is not specific for ASD caregivers, the PTSS has the potential for wider usage in other populations for whom the identification of specific positive thinking skills could provide direction for future intervention.

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