Development of a measure of social inclusion for arts and mental health project participants

Secker, Jenny, Hacking, Suzanne, Kent, Lyn, Shenton, Jo and Spandler, Helen orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-0970-5141 (2009) Development of a measure of social inclusion for arts and mental health project participants. Journal of Mental Health, 18 (1). pp. 65-72. ISSN 0963-8237

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Background: Promoting the social inclusion of mental health service users is a UK policy priority, but the development of outcome measures in this area is at an early stage.
Aim: To develop a social inclusion measure for use in a study assessing the outcomes of arts participation for people with mental health needs.

Method: Concept and question development based on literature review, national and European surveys and results of a survey of arts and mental health projects. Measure piloted with 23 arts participants/service user researchers and field tested with 88 arts project participants returning questionnaires including the social inclusion measure, a measure of empowerment and the CORE mental health measure.

Results: Three scales were constructed measuring social acceptance, social isolation and social relations. Internal consistency was good for the individual scales and for the measure as a whole.
Correlations with empowerment and CORE scores indicate reasonable predictive power for the population.

Conclusions: Tests to date indicate the measure is acceptable and measures relevant concepts with good internal consistency. Test-retest reliability and construct validity are not established and replication is required to confirm internal consistency and establish a normative profile for the population.

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