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Optimism is the attitude that good things will happen and that people’s wishes or aims will ultimately be fulfilled. Optimists are people who anticipate positive outcomes, whether serendipitously or through perseverance and effort, and who are confident of attaining desired goals. Most individuals lie somewhere on the spectrum between the two polar opposites of pure optimism and pure pessimism but tend to demonstrate relatively stable situational tendencies in one direction or the other. As optimism researchers, we are pleased to see optimism featured in what seems to be a long-needed antidote to psychology’s focus on what goes wrong with people. Optimism and pessimism are both complex concepts, and research to date usually renders them in simplistic fashion. Although it is possible to disparage this construct as merely folk psychology, optimism turns out to be a case in which widespread intuition has a strong basis in reality. The optimism construct has proven to be useful and relevant to a range of topic areas.
Scheier, Carver and Bridges (1994) consider optimism and pessimism as generalized expectations about the events happening in individuals’ lives. These expectations are considered stable arrangements, in other words, characteristics of each person. Also, the optimism construct can be understood as one-dimensional and bipolar, which means that it is an only attribute with two extremes, which can vary between optimism and pessimism.
The ideas about optimism and pessimism as individual differences both the established theories as well as the qualifications just made suggest a family of features that should all be taken seriously. A composite account of optimism and pessimism should (a) distinguish positive expectations from negative expectations; (b) acknowledge the person’s sense of agency (or not) with respect to the outcomes that are the subject of expectancies; (c) allow for the possibility that these beliefs may be accurate, inaccurate, or indeterminate; and (d) specify whether optimism and pessimism are rendered in mainly cognitive terms or mainly emotional terms. Consider what it means to take seriously these different features. Optimism and pessimism are complex constructs, and it makes no sense to speak of the former as always desirable and the latter as always undesirable. Nonetheless, optimism researchers often generalize glibly across features that matter.
In terms of the measurement instrument, the LOT was created by the developers of the psychological study of optimism. The authors applied an initial set of 16 items to diverse samples of college students. After several revisions of the tool and applications to diverse samples, the tool was ultimately composed of twelve items: four that measured optimism, four that measured pessimism, and four which served as fillers. Over time, many authors have questioned the predictive validity of the LOT with respect to constructs such as neuroticism, trait anxiety, self-esteem, and self-mastery. This led to a revision of the LOT and ultimately, to the development of the LOT-R. In the LOT-R, three of the items included in the original LOT were eliminated, including two that measured optimism and one that measured pessimism, and a new item measuring optimism was added.
Since its beginnings, so many previous researches have demonstrated the LOT’s psychometric properties and the questionnaire is currently one of the most widely used instruments for assessing dispositional optimism. The LOT, and especially the LOT-R have been adapted to Chinese (Lai & Yue, 2000), Dutch (Haanstra et al., 2015), German (Herzberg et al., 2006; Glaesmer, Hoyer, Klotsche, & Herzberg, 2008; Glaesmer et al., 2012), Greek (Lyrakos, Damigos, Mavreas, Georgia, & Dimoliatis, 2010), Italian (Chiesi, Galli, Primi, Borgi, & Bonacchi, 2013), Japanese (Nakano, 2004; Sumi, 2004), Jordanian (Khallad, 2010), Malay (Abdullah et al., 2017), Norway (Schou-Bredal, Heir, Skogstad, Bonsaksen, Lerdar, Grimholt, & Ekeberg, 2017), Portuguese of Brazil (Bastianello, Pacico & Hutz, 2014; Ottati & Noronha, 2017), Russian (Gordeeva, Sychev & Osin, 2010), Serbian (Jovanovic & Gavrilov-Jerkovic, 2013), Spanish of Latin America (Zenger et al., 2013), Spanish of Spain (Cano-Garcia et al., 2015; Perczek et al., 2000), Thai (Gooren, Sungkaew, & Giltay, 2013; Wisessathorn, Chanuantong, and Fisher 2013), until now there is no studies about Indonesian version of LOT-R that have been adapted. Currently, there are not “specific” Rasch measurement contributions to the study of the scale, until now studied applying classical test theory (CTT), CFA and some with other IRT model like GRM and the applications of Rasch measurement model have potential benefits in testing and improving the accuracy in the assessment.
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