Introducing the WHOQOL-SRPB BREF: Developing a short-form instrument for assessing spiritual, religious and personal beliefs within quality of life

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

  • Authors:
  • Suzanne M. Skevington
  • Keely Sarah Gunson
  • Kathryn Ann O'Connell


Purpose: The aim was to develop and conduct preliminary testing of a short-form measure to assess spiritual, religious and personal beliefs (SRPB) within quality of life (QoL). Methods: Existing data from the 132 items of the WHOQOL-SRPB (n = 5087) obtained in 18 cultures were first analysed to select the 'best' performing item from each of the eight SRPB facets. These were integrated with the 26 WHOQOL-BREF items to give 34 items in the WHOQOL-SRPB BREF. A focus group of hospital chaplains reviewed this new short-form. The WHOQOL-SRPB BREF was administered to a UK community sample (n = 230) either with an adapted WHOQOL-SRPB Importance measure or the SWBQ. A subset received both WHOQOL measures twice. Results: Completed in 8 mins, the WHOQOL-SRPB BREF was acceptable and feasible; Importance 5.5 mins. Good internal consistency reliability was found overall (α = 0.85), for the SRPB domain (α = 0.83), and Importance (α = 0.90). Domains were moderately correlated. Domain test-retest reliability was acceptable in both WHOQOL measures, except for SRPB Importance. Sleep was linked with religious beliefs. Hope and wholeness were widely associated with non-spiritual facets. Factor analysis (maximum likelihood) of items largely confirmed the WHOQOL domain structure, adding SRPB as a significant fifth domain. Internally, SRPB distinguished religious from existential beliefs, and was validated by association with personal and transcendental well-being from the SWBQ. Conclusion: Preliminary evidence shows that the WHOQOL-SRPB BREF is sound for use in, and beyond health care. Extracted from a measure already available in 18 languages, this short-form can be immediately used where such translations exist. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1073-1083
Number of pages10
JournalQuality of Life Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013