Hands holding gauge to measure word "hope"

Measuring Hope: Use of the Trait Hope Scale for People with Disabilities

In Disability Specific, Featured, Findings, News, Psychosocial Adjustment, Quality of Life, Research Findings, Spinal Cord Injury, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Skills and Competency by SVRILeave a Comment

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Snyder’s Hope Theory states that hope results from a combination of believing there is a way to achieve personal goals and being motivated to take action to pursue those goals.   Hope contributes to positive psychosocial adjustment outcomes, including academic achievement and physical and mental health, in people with chronic illness and disability.  It also results in greater life satisfaction, self-esteem, and proactive coping among individuals with spinal cord injuries.  This recent study was done to validate the Trait Hope Scale among a sample of individuals with spinal cord injury and provide a valid way to measure hope for people with chronic illness and disability.


This study shows a connection between individuals’ belief in their ability to achieve personal goals and motivation to take action to pursue those goals, and their level of self-esteem, self-efficacy, disability acceptance, and life satisfaction.  It supports the use of the Hope Trait Scale for individuals living with spinal cord injury.


The following interventions are suggested:

  • Incorporate hope, defined as a belief in one’s ability to achieve personal goals and motivation to take action to pursue those goals, in:
    * Rehabilitation case conceptualization
    * Treatment planning
    * Clinical rehabilitation practice
  • Assist individuals in cognitively developing ways to accomplish their goals

Bottom Line

The use of Snyder’s hope theory results in positive psychosocial outcomes for individuals with disabilities.  The Trait Hope Scale is a valid measure of hope for people living with spinal cord injuries.

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Source: Smedema, M.S., Pfaller, J., Moser, E., Tur, W., & Chan, F. (2013). Measurement structure of the trait hope scale in persons with spinal cord injury: A confirmatory factor analysis. Rehabilitation Research, Policy, and Education, 27(3), 206-212.

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