Date of Graduation
Very few studies have examined the concept of fear in older adults. Moreover, there is no self-report measure of fear that has been shown to be psychometrically sound for use with older individuals. The primary purposes of the present study were: (a) to develop a measure of self-reported fear that includes fears relevant to older adulthood, (b) to develop a measure for assessing daily interference associated with fears, and (c) to examine the psychometric properties of this new instrument. Secondarily, preliminary findings from Kogan and Edelstein (1997) raise the question of why some older adults report interference resulting from fear whereas others do not. Another goal, therefore, was to gather pilot data to examine the contributions of several factors (i.e., number of fears endorsed, fear intensity, worry, anxiety, depression, fear avoidance, and gender) to daily interference that is associated with fear. In the first study, 109 participants, age 60 through 91, completed a demographic questionnaire and answered an open-ended question about what types of fears they experience. These fears were then included on a modified version of the Fear Survey Schedule-II (FSS-II-OA) and administered in the second study. In Study Two, 114 participants (age 60 through 88) completed a demographic questionnaire, Fear Survey Schedule-II for Older Adults (FSS-II-OA), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), Penn State Worry Questionnaire (PSWQ), and questions regarding fear avoidance. Results from the second study indicated high levels of internal consistency and test-retest reliability for total scores on the FSS-II-OA. Test-retest reliability estimates were mixed for individual fear intensity and daily interference items on the FSS-II-OA. Low-moderate to moderate correlations were found between the FSS-II-OA and BAI, BDI-II, and PSWQ. In addition, a stepwise multiple regression was performed between fear interference (DV) and number of fears endorsed, fear intensity, worry, anxiety, depression, avoidance, and gender (IVs). 73% of the variance was accounted for by fear intensity, anxiety, and fear avoidance. Suggestions for future research on the measurement of fear in older adults are provided.
Kogan, Jane Null, "Modification and psychometric examination of a self -report measure of fear in older adults." (1999). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 9210.