Development of the dementia community attitudes questionnaire

Sheridan T. Read, Dianne Wynaden, Matthew A. Albrecht, Christine Toye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: What it means to live with dementia is changing. Autonomy, independence and continued community involvement are now recognised goals. As a result, new initiatives are required to support people with dementia to sustain their quality of life, update community understanding and reflect resultant change in community attitudes. Measuring the impact of such initiatives can help determine the extent of their success, inform needs for further intervention and, ultimately, shape policy. Objective: To discover – or, if this could not be achieved, develop – a questionnaire measuring community attitudes towards people with dementia reflecting these newly recognised goals in terms of both content and expression. Methods: A four-stage approach was used in this research: a scoping review of the literature, questionnaire development and expert review, questionnaire piloting, including with people living with dementia and their families, and preliminary psychometric testing. Results: The review failed to retrieve a suitable existing questionnaire. A ten-item questionnaire, the Dementia Community Attitudes Questionnaire was developed, content validity was established by expert review and piloting led to refinements. Exploratory factor analysis (N = 92) generated an interpretable three-factor solution. Cronbach’s alpha coefficient for Factor 1, Engagement, was good (0.855); for Factor 2, Challenges, and Factor 3, Decision-Making, reliability was acceptable (0.785 and 0.709, respectively). Conclusion: Supporting people with dementia to sustain their quality of life requires new initiatives and suitable measures to evaluate their impact. The Dementia Community Attitudes Questionnaire was developed with input from people with dementia, their families, and relevant experts. Items reflect current opportunities for people with dementia to retain their independence, autonomy and community engagement for as long as possible. Following further psychometric testing, this new questionnaire may be useful to evaluate such initiatives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1940-1957
Number of pages18
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021
Externally publishedYes


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