Worrying

Worrying


LASA136 (E)
LASA336 (E)

Contact: Hannie Comijs

Background
Worrying refers to repetitive thoughts about potential threats. It may concern personal issues such as health or finances, or broader issues such as environmental pollution and wars. It may be a stable trait, but it may also have a temporal character. It is highly associated with anxiety disorders and depression. Excessive worrying is the main component of generalized anxiety disorder.

Measurement instrument in LASA
The worry-questionnaire, which is included in the LASA-E measurement, is the Dutch translation of the Penn State Worry Questionnaire (PSWQ; Meyer et al. 1990; Molina & Borkovec, 1994; Kerkhof et al. 2000). The questionnaire contains 16 items, of which 5 items should be reversed. These are the items 1, 3, 8, 10 and 11. The item scores range from 1 (not at all characteristic) to 5 (very characteristic). The total score range from 16 to 80. The generally accepted cut-off of ≥ 56 is used to differentiate between worriers and non-worriers (Molina & Borkovec, 1994; Kerkhof et al. 2000).

For the PSWQ-16, a standardized Chronbachs alpha of .80 (N=1093) has been found in our dataset. However, previous research (Klein Kranenbarg, 2004) suggests the questionnaire should better be abbreviated to increase reliability. This is also affirmed by LASA-data (de Bruijn & Steunenberg, 2004). When the 5 reversed items are deleted, the standardized reliability will increase to .92 (N=1144).

Questionnaires
LASAE136 (self-administered questionnaire: in Dutch)

Variable information
LASAE136;
LASAE336 (scale values)
(pdf)

Availability of information per wave 1

 

B

C

D

E


2B*

F

G

H



3B*

MB*

I

PSWQ-16

-

-

-

Sa

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

1 More information about the LASA data collection waves is available here.

* 2B=baseline second cohort;
   3B=baseline third cohort;
   MB=migrants: baseline first cohort

Sa=data collected in self-administered questionnaire

Previous use in LASA
The questionnaire is not yet used in an international publication.

References

  1. Bruijn, E.D. de, Steunenberg, B. (2004). Beschouwingen over de bruikbaarheid van de PSWQ als instrument voor het meten van overmatig piekeren bij ouderen in de algemene populatie. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. Vakgroep Klinische Psychologie. Rapportage Onderzoeksstage.
  2. Kerkhof, A., Hermans, D., Figee, A., Laeremans, I., Aardema, A. (2000). De Penn State Worry Questionnaire en de Worry Domains Questionnaire: eerste resultaten bij Nederlandse en Vlaamse klinische en poliklinische populaties. Gedragstherapie (33), 135-146.
  3. Klein Kranenbarg, T. (2004). Two studies into the measurement of worrying, a validation of two worry scales. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Vakgroep Klinische Psychologie. Master’s thesis.
  4. Meyer, T.J., Miller, M.L., Metzger, R.L., Borkovec, T.D. (1990). Development and validation of the Penn State Worry Questionnaire. Behaviour Research and Therapy, Vol. 28, No. 6, pp 487-495 (1990).
  5. Molina, S., Borkovec, T.D. The Penn State Worry Questionnaire: psychometric properties and associated characteristics. In: G. Davey, F. Tallis (Red.). Worrying. Perspectives on Theory, Assessment and Treatment. (1994) Chichester: Wiley.