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Title: The construct of mental toughness : the development and validation of a new conceptualisation and measure
Author: Crampton, Simon
ISNI:       0000 0004 5923 5058
Awarding Body: University of Roehampton
Current Institution: University of Roehampton
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis examined issues pertaining to the conceptualisation of mental toughness in sport and its measurement through four central studies. Study 1 systematically identified and examined the mental toughness literature and revealed knowledge appeared limited in that popular definitions were predominantly outcome focused, characteristics were largely descriptive, and currently no psychometrically sound objective measure of mental toughness was available. Given the lack of published evidence supporting the psychometric properties of the most widely used, yet unsubstantiated measure of mental toughness, an examination of the factorial validity of the MTQ48 was advocated. As a result, Study 2 evaluated the psychometric properties of the MTQ48 using a construct validity approach. Overall results could not provide support for the hypothesised factor structures of the MTQ48, supporting concerns over the psychometric reliability and validity of the measure. In pursuit of a new definition and conceptualisation of mental toughness, a metainterpretation approach was adopted in Study 3 designed to systematically analyse and synthesize the current mental toughness literature. A new definition of mental toughness was presented alongside eight conceptually distinct components of mental toughness. In an attempt to move beyond description towards a more theoretical conceptualisation, a multidimensional model of mental toughness was also proposed that reflected the complexity of the concept. In order to operationalise the new conceptualisation, Study 4 developed a new measure of mental toughness – the Sport Mental Toughness Profiler (SMTP). Specifically, two qualitative approaches and two quantitative approaches involving within-network and between-network examinations were conducted. Separate sample CFA’s confirmed the factor structure with further support provided by convergent and divergent examinations alongside follow-up internal-reliability analysis, test-retest and multisource ratings. The influence of age, gender, sport-type (individual vs team) and playing level (elite vs sub-elite) on mental toughness was also examined. Whilst replication and extension was advocated, the results of this study served to provide preliminary support for the SMTP as a valid measure of mental toughness for use within a sport context across levels of competition. The thesis concludes with a summary of key findings, an overview of current findings to align the thesis with contemporary research, an overview of the strengths and limitations of the thesis, and a discussion of the implications for theory, practice and future research.
Supervisor: Skinner, Jonathan ; Wadey, Ross ; Marlow, Caroline Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available