Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 16, Issue 5, pp 579–587 | Cite as

An item-response theory evaluation of the Beck Hopelessness Scale

  • Michael A. Young
  • Ira S. Halper
  • David C. Clark
  • William Scheftner
  • Jan Fawcett
Article

Abstract

Hopelessness is an important clinical symptom for both theoretical and practical reasons. The Hopelessness Scale of Beck and colleagues was constructed to measure this construct, but has had no psychometric assessment since its original development. We conducted an evaluation of the scale using item-response theory. Results in two separate samples were nearly identical. The Hopelessness Scale was found to be unidimensional with strong item—construct relationships. However, it was relatively insensitive at lower levels of hopelessness.

Key words

hopelessness item-response theory measurement 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Abramson, L. Y., Metalsky, G. I., & Alloy, L. B. (1989). Hopelessness depression: A theory-based subtype of depression.Psychological Review, 96 358–372.Google Scholar
  2. Alloy, L. B., Kelly, K. A., Mineka, S., & Clements, C. M. (1990). Comorbidity of anxiety and depressive disorders: A helplessness-hopelessness perspective. In J. Maser & R. C. Cloninger (Eds.),Comorbidity of mood and anxiety disorders (pp. 499–543). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press.Google Scholar
  3. Bech, P., Allerup, P., Gram, L. F., Reisby, N., Rosenberg, R., Jacobsen, O., & Nagy, A. (1981). The Hamilton Depression Scale: Evaluation of objectivity using logistic models.Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 63 290–299.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Beck, A., Kovacs, M., & Weissman, A. (1975). Hopelessness and suicidal behavior.Journal of the American Medical Association, 234 1146–1149.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Beck, A., Rush, A., Shaw, B., & Emery, G. (1979).Cognitive therapy of depression. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  6. Beck, A., Steer, R., Kovacs, M., & Garrison, B. (1985). Hopelessness and eventual suicide: A 10-year prospective study of patients hospitalized with suicidal ideation.American Journal of Psychiatry, 142 559–563.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Beck, A., Weissman, A., Lester, D., & Trexler, L. (1974). The measurement of pessimism: The Hopelessness Scale.Journal Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 42 861–865.Google Scholar
  8. Bock, R. D., Gibbons, R. D., & Muraki, E. (1988) Full-information item factor analysis.Applied Psychological Measurement, 12 261–280.Google Scholar
  9. Drake, R. E., & Cotton, P. G. (1986). Depression, hopelessness and suicide in chronic schizophrenia.British Journal of Psychiatry, 148 554–559.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Fawcett, J., Scheftner, W., Clark, D., Hedeker, D., Gibbons, R., & Coryell, W. (1987). Clinical predictors of suicide in patients with major affective disorders: A controlled prospective study.American Journal of Psychiatry, 144 35–40.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Gibbons, R. D., Clark, D. C., Cavanaugh, S. V., & Davis, J. M. (1985). Application of modern psychometric theory in psychiatric research.Journal of Psychiatric Research, 19 43–55.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Grayson, D. A. (1986). Latent trait analysis of the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire.Psychiatry Research, 20 217–235.Google Scholar
  13. Harman, H. H. (1976).Modern factor analysis. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  14. Katz, M. M., & Klerman, G. L. (1979). Overview of the clinical studies program.American Journal of Psychiatry, 136 49–70.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Kovacs, M., Beck, A., & Weissman, A. (1975). Hopelessness: An indicator of suicidal risk.Suicide, 5 98–103.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Lord, F. M., & Novick, M. R. (1956).Statistical theories of mental test scores. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
  17. Young, M. A., Fogg, L. F., Scheftner, W. A., & Fawcett, J. (1990). The concordance of symptoms in recurrent depressive episodes.Journal of Affective Disorder, 20 79–85.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael A. Young
    • 1
  • Ira S. Halper
    • 1
  • David C. Clark
    • 1
  • William Scheftner
    • 1
  • Jan Fawcett
    • 1
  1. 1.Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical CenterChicagoUSA

Personalised recommendations