Validity of Antonovsky's Sense of Coherence Scale – a systematic review

Nordic School of Public Health, Box 12133, S-40242 Gothenburg, Sweden.
Journal of Epidemiology &amp Community Health (Impact Factor: 3.5). 07/2005; 59(6):460-6. DOI: 10.1136/jech.2003.018085
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The aim of this paper is to systematically review and analyse the validity and reliability of Antonovsky's life orientation questionnaire/sense of coherence scale (SOC).
The study is descriptive and analytical with a systematic integration of the contemporary knowledge base on the salutogenic research published 1992-2003. The review includes 458 scientific publications and 13 doctoral theses.
Worldwide, based on postgraduate scientific publications in eight authorized databases, doctoral theses, and available books.
The SOC questionnaire has been used in at least 33 languages in 32 countries with at least 15 different versions of the questionnaire. In 124 studies using SOC-29 the Cronbach's alpha ranges from 0.70 to 0.95. The alpha values in 127 studies using SOC-13 range from 0.70 to 0.92, and in 60 studies using a modified SOC scale range from 0.35 to 0.91. Test-retest correlation show stability and range from 0.69 to 0.78 (1 year), 0.64 (3 years), 0.42 to 0.45 (4 years), 0.59 to 0.67 (5 years) to 0.54 (10 years). The means of SOC-29 range 100.50 (SD 28.50) to 164.50 (SD 17.10) points and SOC-13 from 35.39 (SD 0.10) to 77.60 (SD 13.80) points. After 10 years SOC seems to be comparatively stable, but not as stable as Antonovsky initially assumed. SOC tends to increase with age. The factorial structure of SOC seems rather to be multidimensional than unidimensional. SOC predicts a positive outcome in a long term perspective, although there are divergent findings reported. The SOC scale seems to be a reliable, valid, and cross culturally applicable instrument measuring how people manage stressful situations and stay well.

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Available from: Bengt Lindström, Jul 16, 2014
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    • "The questionnaire is based on self-report, and the scale consists of 13 items on a seven-point Likert scale, and they cover the three dimensions of SOC: comprehensibility – the cognitive component (five items); manageability – the instrumental or behavioral component (four items); and meaningfulness – the motivational component (four items), The SOC-13 scale is regarded as a reliable and valid instrument, with a reported internal consistency (Cronbach's α) of 0.70-0.92 (Eriksson and Lindström, 2005). In the present study, the Cronbach's score was 0.65. "
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to investigate changes in, and associations between, sense of coherence (SOC) and emotional distress in women who participated in an accredited motivational program (VINN) in correctional institutions in five countries. Design/methodology/approach - A prospective study with a pre- and post-test design included 316 participants from Sweden, Estonia, Denmark, Russia and Norway. Global emotional distress was measured by the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. SOC was measured using the 13-item Orientation to Life Questionnaire. One-way analysis of variance and multilevel regression models were used in the statistical analyses. Findings - An increase in SOC was associated with a decrease in emotional distress. Emotional distress decreased significantly -3.80 points (95 percent CI (-4.61, -2.97)), and SOC significantly improved from pre- to post-measurement by 1.82 points (95 percent CI (0.72, 2.92)), regardless of country and correctional institution. Practical implications - The results add new knowledge regarding a coherent theoretical foundation of a motivational program for women. The ability of a program promoting health is important for researchers, health-care workers and facilitators delivering programs for women in correctional facilities. An increase in SOC can act as a protective factor in order to manage stressors and risk factors among women serving in correctional facilities. Originality/value - The present study indicates that enhancing women's coping resources and providing income alternatives to crime is fundamental to their capacity to desist from criminal behavior.
    International Journal of Prisoner Health 09/2015; 11(3):169-82. DOI:10.1108/IJPH-10-2014-0037
    • "This finding can be compared with Söderhamn and Holmgren [24], who found that 27 of the 29 items showed significant item-to-total correlations . The result of homogeneity in our study is in agreement with Antonovsky [1] and eriksson and lindström [8], who found that the SOC scale shows high internal consistency. The construct validity of SOC-29 was supported using " the known-groups technique " for groups with expected high and low scores. "
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to test the homogeneity and construct validity of the Sense of Coherence 29-item scale (SOC-29) among older home-dwelling Norwegians. A postal questionnaire, consisting of background variables, five health-related questions, the SOC-29, and three other instruments measuring mental health, self-care ability, and risk for undernutrition, was sent to 6033 home-dwelling older people (65+ years) in southern Norway. A total of 2069 participants were included. Homogeneity was assessed with Cronbach's alpha coefficient and item-to-total correlations. The construct validity was assessed with "the known-groups technique," a linear stepwise regression analysis with SOC score serving as the dependent variable and with confirmatory factor analysis. With a Cronbach's alpha coefficient of 0.91 and statistically significant item-to-total correlations, the SOC-29 was found to be homogeneous. Construct validity was supported because the SOC-29 could separate known groups with expected high and low scores. The factors that could predict SOC were mental health, self-care ability, feeling lonely, being active, and chronic disease or handicap. Evidence of construct validity was displayed in a confirmatory factor analysis that confirmed SOC-29 as one theoretical construct with the three dimensions, comprehensibility, manageability, and meaningfulness. The Norwegian version of the SOC-29 is a reliable and valid instrument for use in research among older people. The results confirm that SOC has a particularly strong relationship with mental health and self-care ability. © 2015 the Nordic Societies of Public Health.
    Scandinavian Journal of Public Health 08/2015; DOI:10.1177/1403494815598863 · 1.83 Impact Factor
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    • "Optimism may be seen as a more generic factor ( Carver , Scheier , and Segerstrom 2010 ) , and more directly connected to change in stress ( Lerdal et al . 2012 ) than SOC ( Eriksson and Lindstrøm 2005 ) . "
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    ABSTRACT: Background: To describe optimism and sense of coherence in mothers and fathers of preschool children with cerebral palsy (CP), before and after participation in an intensified habilitation program. Methods: Forty-five parents of preschool children with CP answered the Life Orientation Test (LOT) and sense of coherence questionnaire (SOC) twice during one year. Results: Parents of the youngest CP children and those with high stress levels reported reduced optimism and sense of coherence at baseline. No statistically significant changes in LOT and SOC scores were found during the programme period. However, among mothers who reported clinically significant change, 67% reported more optimism after the program. There was a strong negative correlation between parental stress and LOT and SOC in mothers at baseline, and the fathers results changed to a similar correlation after intervention. Conclusions: Program intensified habilitation (PIH) seems to induce a more reality-oriented view of the situation among fathers and more optimism among about half of the mothers.
    Scandinavian Journal of Disability Research 07/2015; ISSN: 1501-7419:1-11. DOI:10.1080/15017419.2015.1064025
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