[Developing and testing the validity and reliability of the Chinese version attitudes toward mental illness scale in a sample of senior high school students]

Yu-Ping Kuo, Jui-Tai Hung, Tsai-Wei Huang, Pei-Chen Hsu, Hui-Chen Su, Ching-Lan Esther Lin
Hu Li za Zhi the Journal of Nursing 2014, 61 (6): 48-56

BACKGROUND: Public attitudes toward mental illness influence the success with which patients reenter the community. An attitude instrument suitable to the Chinese cultural setting with good reliability and validity is essential to examining public attitudes toward mental illness. Exploring the perspectives of adolescents is relevant because most mental illness occurs during adolescence.

PURPOSE: This study developed and tested the psychometric quality of the Chinese-version Attitudes Toward Mental Illness (CAMI) scale among senior high school students.

METHODS: The original AMI was translated into Chinese using a back and forth translation method and its content validity was examined. A cross-sectional survey of 479 senior high school students was conducted to assess the construct validity, cross validity, and internal consistency of the CAMI.

RESULTS: The CAMI showed adequate content validity. The confirmatory factor analysis support: the appropriateness of CAMI's original two-factor structure of negative attitude and recovery outcomes after deleting items 9 and 11; the measurement of the negative perceptions of mentally ill patients and their risks to community; and the perceptions of recovery of mentally ill patients. The construct validity and cross validity are appropriate and the internal consistency of the total scale and two subscales are acceptable (Cronbach's α: .76, .75, .81).

CONCLUSIONS / IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: The reliability and validity of the CAMI is appropriate for the sample of senior high students in this study. Future studies should target a broader range of people in order to establish the reliability and validity of the scale in different groups and to build up empirical knowledge on public attitudes toward mental illness. The application of this scale is expected to contribute to the development of anti-stigma interventions and to the creation of friendly communities for mentally ill patients.

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