, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 312–324 | Cite as

Psychometric Evaluation of the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire in a Clinical Sample of African Americans

  • Natalie N. Watson-Singleton
  • James H. Walker
  • Devon LoParo
  • Sallie A. Mack
  • Nadine J. KaslowEmail author


The Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ), a widely used and comprehensive assessment of mindfulness, has demonstrated promising psychometric properties among non-clinical and clinical samples and among diverse international samples. Yet, to date, no studies have examined its factor structure, reliability, and validity in a clinical sample of United States (USA) underrepresented minorities. The current study addressed this by investigating the factor structure, internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and construct validity of the FFMQ among 283 low-income African American adults with a recent suicide attempt. Exploratory factor analysis revealed a 20-item, five-factor measure: acting with awareness, describing, non-judging, observing, and non-reacting. Confirmatory factor analysis supported this reduced item five-factor structure. Internal consistency coefficients ranged from 60–86, but test-retest reliability coefficients did not support the temporal stability. Construct validity was supported; FFMQ facets were correlated with theoretically related constructs, such as self-compassion and self-criticism. Several facets were negatively associated with depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation, and the describing facet demonstrated unique predictive validity for depressive symptoms. These findings support the cultural relevance and utility of the FFMQ with African Americans with significant psychological distress.


Mindfulness Questionnaire Validation African Americans 



This research was supported by a grant from the Emory University Research Council (Group interventions for Suicidal African American men and women)awarded to the last author. We appreciate the contributions of Bradley Goodnight and Martha Calamaras to this project.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Conflict of Interest

None of the authors have any conflicts of interest to report.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Natalie N. Watson-Singleton
    • 1
  • James H. Walker
    • 2
  • Devon LoParo
    • 2
  • Sallie A. Mack
    • 2
  • Nadine J. Kaslow
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Spelman CollegeAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesEmory School of Medicine, Grady HospitalAtlantaUSA

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