The Assessment of Mindfulness with Self-Report Measures: Existing Scales and Open Issues
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During recent years, mindfulness-based approaches have been gaining relevance for treatment in clinical populations. Correspondingly, the empirical study of mindfulness has steadily grown; thus, the availability of valid measures of the construct is critically important. This paper gives an overview of the current status in the field of self-report assessment of mindfulness. All eight currently available and validated mindfulness scales (for adults) are evaluated, with a particular focus on their virtues and limitations and on differences among them. It will be argued that none of these scales may be a fully adequate measure of mindfulness, as each of them offers unique advantages but also disadvantages. In particular, none of them seems to provide a comprehensive assessment of all aspects of mindfulness in samples from the general population. Moreover, some scales may be particularly indicated in investigations focusing on specific populations such as clinical samples (Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale, Southampton Mindfulness Questionnaire) or meditators (Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory). Three main open issues are discussed: (1) the coverage of aspects of mindfulness in questionnaires; (2) the nature of the relationships between these aspects; and (3) the validity of self-report measures of mindfulness. These issues should be considered in future developments in the self-report assessment of mindfulness.
KeywordsMindfulness Assessment Self-Report Questionnaire
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