Clarifying quality of life assessment: Do theoretical models capture the underlying cognitive processes? Journal Article


Authors: Bloem, E. F.; Van Zuuren, F. J.; Koeneman, M. A.; Rapkin, B. D.; Visser, M. R. M.; Koning, C. C. E.; Sprangers, M. A. G.
Article Title: Clarifying quality of life assessment: Do theoretical models capture the underlying cognitive processes?
Abstract: Objective: To develop an analysis scheme capturing the cognitive processes underlying QoL assessment to increase our understanding on how to interpret responses to QoL items. Tourangeau et al.'s (The psychology of survey response, 2000) and Rapkin and Schwartz' (Health Qual Life Outcomes 2:14, 2004) cognitive process models form the basis for this analysis scheme. Methods: We conducted think aloud interviews with six cancer patients prior to and following radiotherapy to elicit the cognitive processes underlying the assessment of 7 EORTC QLQ-C30 items. Content analysis was carried out by two to four researchers independently. Eighty text fragments were analyzed inductively and combined in an iterative process with deductive analyses based on both models. Results: We have developed a comprehensive analysis scheme feasible for analyzing the cognitive processes underlying QoL assessment qualitatively. All cognitive components of both models could be distinguished in our data. The cognitive component 'reporting and response selection' needed extension to fully capture the cognitive processes used. Conclusion: The two models combined are useful in describing the cognitive processes cancer patients use in answering QoL items, and as such facilitate insight into patients' self-reported QoL assessments. Interestingly, the content of the cognitive processes not only differed between patients but also between items within patients and over time. © 2008 The Author(s).
Keywords: adult; clinical article; aged; aged, 80 and over; middle aged; cancer patient; cancer radiotherapy; neoplasms; quality of life; questionnaires; models, theoretical; adaptation, psychological; interviews as topic; cognition; interview; cognition disorders; qualitative research; theoretical model; stress, psychological; psychometrics; models, psychological; content analysis; cognitive interviews; cognitive processes
Journal Title: Quality of Life Research
Volume: 17
Issue: 8
ISSN: 0962-9343
Publisher: Springer  
Date Published: 2008-01-01
Start Page: 1093
End Page: 1102
Language: English
DOI: 10.1007/s11136-008-9380-z
PUBMED: 18704756
PROVIDER: scopus
DOI/URL:
Notes: --- - "Cited By (since 1996): 8" - "Export Date: 17 November 2011" - "CODEN: QLREE" - "Source: Scopus"
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  1. Bruce D Rapkin
    45 Rapkin