Abend R, Dan O, Maoz K, Raz S, Bar-Haim Y. Reliability, validity and sensitivity of a computerized visual analog scale measuring state anxiety. J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry. 2014 Dec;45(4):447-53. Epub 2014 Jun 18. PMID: 24978117.
J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry. 2014 Dec;45(4):447-53. doi: 10.1016/j.jbtep.2014.06.004. Epub 2014 Jun 18.
Reliability, validity and sensitivity of a computerized visual analog scale measuring state anxiety.
Abend R(1), Dan O(2), Maoz K(3), Raz S(2), Bar-Haim Y(3).
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Assessment of state anxiety is frequently required in clinical and research settings, but its measurement using standard multi-item inventories entails practical challenges. Such inventories are increasingly complemented by paper-and-pencil, single-item visual analog scales measuring state anxiety (VAS-A), which allow rapid assessment of current anxiety states. Computerized versions of VAS-A offer additional advantages, including facilitated and accurate data collection and analysis, and applicability to computer-based protocols. Here, we establish the psychometric properties of a computerized VAS-A.
METHODS: Experiment 1 assessed the reliability, convergent validity, and discriminant validity of the computerized VAS-A in a non-selected sample. Experiment 2 assessed its sensitivity to increase in state anxiety following social stress induction, in participants with high levels of social anxiety.
RESULTS: Experiment 1 demonstrated the computerized VAS-A's test-retest reliability (r = .44, p < .001); convergent validity with the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory's state subscale (STAI-State; r = .60, p < .001); and discriminant validity as indicated by significantly lower correlations between VAS-A and different psychological measures relative to the correlation between VAS-A and STAI-State. Experiment 2 demonstrated the VAS-A's sensitivity to changes in state anxiety via a significant pre- to during-stressor rise in VAS-A scores (F(1,48) = 25.13, p < .001).
LIMITATIONS: Set-order administration of measures, absence of clinically-anxious population, and gender-unbalanced samples.
CONCLUSIONS: The adequate psychometric characteristics, combined with simple and rapid administration, make the computerized VAS-A a valuable self-rating tool for state anxiety. It may prove particularly useful for clinical and research settings where multi-item inventories are less applicable, including computer-based treatment and assessment protocols. The VAS-A is freely available: http://people.socsci.tau.ac.il/mu/anxietytrauma/visual-analog-scale/.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
PMID: 24978117 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]