Optimism and pessimism of physical education and non-physical education students: Invariance of structure

Maher M. Abu-Hilal*, Kashef Zayed

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Introduction: Optimisim and pessimism are two psychological constructs that play a significant role in human mental and psychological hygiene. The two construct are strongly but negatively correlated. Optimisim and pessimisim can be influenced by culture and the environment. The present study attempts to test the structure of optimisim and pessimisim across two countries: United Arab Emirates and Oman. Also, physical education students were compared to non-physical education students. Method: College students from SQU in Oman (n = 103) and the UAEU (n = 200) participated in the study. The sample was a convenient one. The SQU sample was primarily physical education students (males = 60, females = 43). The instrument consisted of thirty Likerttype items. Optimism was measured by 15 items and so as pessimism. Results: Exploratory factor analysis clearly identified two factors rather than one bipolar factor. The number of factors (2), the pattern of factor loadings, the factor correlations and uniqueness were invariant across P.E. and non P.E samples. MANOVA revealed that P.E. subjects were more optimistic than non P.E. subjects. However, no significant difference was found in pessimism between P.E. and non P.E. subjects. Discussion and Conclusion: The results revealed that optimisim and pessimism can influenced by the immediate environment as well as the type of study. It terms of structure, the instrument was as valid and reliable in Oman and UAE as it was valid and reliable in Kuwait where the instrument was originally developed and standardized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1267-1284
Number of pages18
JournalElectronic Journal of Research in Educational Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2011


  • College students
  • Oman
  • Optimisim
  • Pessimisim
  • Physical education
  • United arab emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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