Objective: To examine the comprehensibility, reliability, and validity of a trait measure, the Generalized Self-Efficacy Scale (GSES), among people with arthritis. The scale is designed to measure perceived coping ability across a wide range of demanding situations.
Methods: Four studies were conducted. Study 1 tested the comprehensibility of the GSES. Studies 2, 3, and 4 tested the reliability and validity of the modified scale. Data were collected through self-administered questionnaires. Reliability and structure of the GSES were examined using standard item analysis, internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha), test-retest reliability, and factor analyses. Concurrent and predictive validity were examined in relation to demographic, physical, psychological, and social dimensions.
Results: The GSES assessed a unitary concept. Higher generalized self-efficacy was associated with greater psychological well-being, both cross-sectionally and longitudinally. The GSES was independent of age and physical health status.
Conclusions: The GSES is a reliable and valid measure for use among community-based samples of people with arthritis and may be a useful indicator of general adaptational outcomes.