Term of Award

Spring 2008

Degree Name

Master of Science in Kinesiology (M.S.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Department

Department of Health and Kinesiology

Committee Chair

Daniel R. Czech

Committee Member 1

Glenn P. Burdette III

Committee Member 2

A. Barry Joyner

Committee Member 3

Jonathan N. Metzler

Abstract

Researchers suggest that optimistic individuals approach life situations with the belief that outcomes will be favorable, and are more likely to exhibit better coping mechanisms when dealing with adversity and stress (Carver, & Scheier, 1987; Karadeaus, Karvelis, Argyropoulou, 2007). Moreover, the cognitive adaptation theory suggests that optimistic individuals are more likely to make appropriate cognitive adaptations to stressful situations (Lightsey, 1994; Alloy & Clements, 1992). Results concerning athletic status, gender, optimism, and stress are mixed. The purpose of this study was to compare athletes and non athletes and gender on optimism and life stress. The present study will utilize the Life Orientation Test-Revised, measuring optimism and the Undergraduate Stress Questionnaire, measuring life stress. The results will be analyzed using three independent t-tests with an alpha level set at .016 utilizing the Bonferroni adjustment technique. Discussion to take place will be between optimism and stress levels, athletic status, and gender.

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