The Content of Worry The Worry Domains Questionnaire Tallis Davey Bond 1992

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Within the literature, attention has been given to the content features of worry. The rationale for considering clusters of worry content types was driven by the theoretical view that there exist semantically cohesive domains of worry-related material stored in memory (Eysenck, 1984). This culminated in production of the WDQ (Tallis, Eysenck & Mathews, 1992), the most widely used content-based measure of worry. There is also a shortened version of the WDQ, which has 10 rather than 25 items and high internal consistency (WDQ-SF; Stober & Joorman, 2001).

The Worry Domains Questionnaire was developed as an instrument to measure non-pathological worry. By means of a cluster analytic method, six domains of worry were highlighted: (1) Relationships, (2) Lack of Confidence, (3) Aimless Future, (4) Work Incompetence, (5) Financial and (6) Socio-Political (for a full description of scale development, see Tallis et al., 1994). The scale is comprised of 30 items. The prefix "I worry ..." is followed by a list of 30 worries (e.g., "that I will lose close friends") that cover the six worry domains, however, the sixth cluster (socio-political) may be dropped. For each item, participants indicate how much they worry on a five-point scale from "not at all" (0) to "extremely" (4). The WDQ can distinguish between high and low worriers drawn from a non-clinical population. The total WDQ score gives an indication of worry frequency, and the subscales provide information with respect to worry content. The resultant scale has shown internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha) of at least .89 (Davey, 1993; Joormann & Stober, 1997; Stober, 1998) and test-retest reliability coefficients of 0.790.85 over a period of four weeks (Davey, 1993; Stober, 1998). Furthermore, the scale demonstrates substantial convergent validity with measures of anxiety. Average agreement amongst peers has produced intraclass correlations of 0.47 and an aggregated self-peer agreement of 0.42 (Stober, 1998).

The WDQ correlates highly with measures of trait anxiety and depression (Davey, 1993; Van Rijsoort et al., 1999) and with other associated measures such as the MOCI (see Tallis et al., 1994 for more detail). Van Rijsoort and colleagues (1999) argued for the inclusion of an additional health worry domain and created a revised version of the WDQ on this basis (WDQ-R). The PSWQ and WDQ are significantly intercorrelated, with r = 0.63 (Davey, 1993; Joorman & Stober, 1997; Stober, 1995) or higher (r = 0.68; Stober, 1998). The magnitudes of these correlations are to be expected given that the measures are tapping highly related, though conceptually distinct facets of the same phenomena.

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