|dc.description.abstract||Coping strategies represent the efforts, both behavioural and cognitive, that people invest in
order to deal with stressful encounters. Coping is a basic component for developing
adaptation and plays a major role in the relationship between the individual and the
environment, especially as a moderating element between stress and sickness. Against this
backdrop of the impact that the well-being of employees has on organisations, it is of the
essence that organisations need to understand how their members cope with the demands
which the organisation places on them. This understanding can assist organisations to
evaluate the resources they make available to help employees to cope more positively with
the demands placed upon them.
The general objective of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties of the
Coping Orientations to the Problems Experienced Questionnaire (COPE) within different
occupational groups in South Africa, to examine the construct equivalence and to assess
reliability. A swey design was used. Random samples (N = 3178) were taken from
electricity supply personnel, nurses and police officials, and the COPE was administered.
Descriptive statistics, exploratory factor analysis and multivariate analysis of variance
(MANOVA) were used to analyse the data.
Exploratory factor analysis, using principal axis factoring with varimax rotation, was
conducted on 53 items of the COPE and revealed four interpretable factors (Factor 1 =
Approach Coping; Factor 2 = Avoidance; Factor 3 = Seeking Support; and Factor 4 = Turn to
Religion). Highly acceptable Tucker's phi coefficients were found for all the comparisons,
and therefore, sufficient evidence for the construct equivalence of the COPE was
demonstrated. Alpha coefficients, ranging from 0,85 to 0,92, were obtained. Statistically
significant differences were found between the coping strategies employed within the
different organisational, gender and language groups.
Recommendations for future research were made.||