The psychometric properties of the cognitive emotion regulation questionnaire (CERQ) in a clinical sample of adults with recurrent depression.
McKinnon A., Kuyken W., Hayes R., Werner-Seidler A., Watson P., Dalgleish T., Schweizer S.
BACKGROUND: Affective dysregulation is central to depression. However, emotion regulation (ER) tendencies in depression remain poorly understood. It is critical, therefore, to validate measures of habitual ER in clinical populations. The current study aimed to validate the Cognitive Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (CERQ) in a sample of individuals with a history of recurrent depression who are currently in remission. METHOD: The CERQ measures ER tendencies with 36 self-report items that are divided into nine subscales. Each subscale is purported to assess one of five adaptive and four maladaptive ER strategies. The CERQ was administered to 476 adults (mean age = 46.76 years; 75% female) that were currently in remission with a history of recurrent depression, who were recruited from primary care settings. We first investigated the CERQ's nine factor structure, internal consistency, convergent and criterion validity. RESULTS: The nine-factor structure did not fit the CERQ structure in a sample of individuals with recurrent depression and convergent validity was poor. Instead, a five-factor structure fit the data best and showed acceptable convergent and criterion validity. LIMITATIONS: The generalisability of the findings may be limited due to relative lack of diversity in terms of gender and ethnicity of the sample. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that the taxonomic structure of the CERQ does not fit emotion regulation patterns in adults with a history of depression. These findings highlight the importance of validating measures in clinical samples.