, Volume 20, Issue 7, pp 1035-1042
Date: 18 Jan 2011

The development and validation of a general measure of well-being: the BBC well-being scale

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The concept of maximising well-being, as opposed to merely treating mental disorder, is a powerful current theme in the area of mental health. Clearly this emphasises the need for appropriate valid and reliable measures of general well-being. This paper examines the appropriateness of a number of measures in this area and concludes that existing assessment tools fail to address the full range of aspects of personal well-being. This paper therefore presents the psychometric properties, validity and reliability of a new measure of well-being—the BBC Well-being Scale.


A total of 1,940 participants completed the new measure, the Goldberg scales of anxiety and depression, the ‘List of Threatening Experiences’ life events scale, a modified version of the Response Styles Questionnaire and a modified version of the Internal, Personal and Situational Attributions Questionnaire presented via the internet.


Exploratory factor-analysis suggested a three-factor solution including themes of psychological well-being, physical health and well-being and relationships. The total 24-item scale had good internal consistency (α = .935) and correlated significantly with key demographic variables and measures of concurrent validity.


The new measure—the BBC Well-being Scale—is recommended for research and clinical purposes.