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Keywords:

  • information-seeking behaviour;
  • Miller Behavioural Style Scale;
  • psychometric properties;
  • breast cancer;
  • adult daughters

The psychometric properties of the Miller Behavioural Style Scale with adult daughters of women with early breast cancer: a literature review and empirical study

Several researchers have suggested that the information-seeking behaviours of patients need to be taken into consideration when assessing their information needs. This study reviews published evidence of the psychometric properties of the Miller Behavioural Style Scale, a tool commonly used to identify the information-seeking behaviours of individuals under threat, and examines its reliability and validity with adult daughters of women with early breast cancer. Ninety-seven adult daughters completed the MBSS and a 30-item, self-administered questionnaire, a tool designed to explore the information needs of adult daughters of women with breast cancer. The internal consistency of the monitoring and blunting sub-scales of the MBSS was α=0·65 and 0·41 respectively. The blunting sub-scale fell substantially below acceptable limits and was discarded from subsequent analyses. The monitoring sub-scale possessed good test–retest reliability (n=17) with a 5-week time interval (r=0·71, P < 0·005), as measured using a Pearson’s correlation coefficient. Furthermore, the majority (73·4%) of monitoring items possessed moderate or substantial test–retest reliability, as indicated by kappa coefficients. Finally, the monitoring sub-scale possessed good construct validity, both discriminant and convergent validity, as measured by the univariate associations between monitoring behaviour and selected items from the information questionnaire and a demographic questionnaire. In conclusion, adequate support exists for the psychometric properties of the monitoring sub-scale of the MBSS and its use with adult daughters of women with early breast cancer in future research. These findings have a number of implications for nursing research and these are discussed in this paper.