Construction of a Scale of Contemplative Practice in Higher Education: An Exploratory Study
Keywords:Holistic Education, Higher Education, Stress and Coping, Contemplative Practices, Emotional Intelligence, Mindfulness, Active Listening, Compassion, Self-Compassion
Some scholars have formed a more expansive view of knowledge that moves beyond the cognitive notion of intellect. For example, emotional intelligence theory posits that human intelligence encompasses both cognitive and emotional competencies, providing a framework for a relatively new concept known as contemplative practice. The purposes of this study were: (a) to develop a self-report measure, the Scale of Contemplative Practice in Higher Education (SCOPE), and (b) to explore issues of validity and reliability related to the SCOPE. An extensive review of the literature, reference to personal experiences, and consultation with an expert panel were used to generate scale items. The participants were 253 educator preparation graduate students. An orthogonal exploratory factor analysis resulted in a seven-factor scale that accounted for 54.48% of the variance, although four factors evidenced low reliability. The 27-item full-scale SCOPE exhibited good internal reliability (α= .857) and test-retest reliability (r = .879). Future exploration is recommended regarding content and construct validation as to whether contemplative practice is best viewed as a single- or multiple-factor construct.
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