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Keywords:

  • breastfeeding self-efficacy;
  • instrument development;
  • psychometric testing;
  • translation;
  • maternal confidence

The purpose of this methodological study was to translate the Breastfeeding Self-Efficacy Scale (BSES) into Mandarin and determine the psychometric characteristics among a sample of 186 Chinese women. The BSES was translated and pilot-tested with 21 breastfeeding women. Following minor revisions to ensure content and semantic equivalence, the instrument was administered to 186 hospitalized breastfeeding women, who were then contacted again at 4 and 8 weeks postpartum to determine their infant feeding method and readminister the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. The psychometric assessment method used to validate the original BSES (English version) was replicated with the translated Chinese version. The Cronbach's alpha coefficient for the Chinese version BSES was 0.93, suggesting good reliability. Consistent with the English version, the factor analysis procedures resulted in the theorized two-factor solution and as hypothesized, the BSES was significantly correlated with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale, a theoretically related construct. Support for predictive validity was demonstrated through significant mean differences in BSES scores between breastfeeding and bottle-feeding mothers at 4 and 8 weeks postpartum. The results from this study are the first to examine the psychometric characteristics of the Chinese version BSES administered in a hospital postnatally and provide further evidence of the reliability and validity of the instrument.