Rasch Analysis of the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS) in the Context of Workplace Bullying for a Sample of Nursing Faculty from Midwest U.S. Universities

Friday, 3 August 2012: 10:55 AM

Aryn C. Karpinski, PhD1
Laura C. Dzurec, PhD, PMHCNS-BC2
Gail E. Bromley, PhD, RN, CNS2
Shawn M. Fitzgerald, PhD1
Timothy W. Meyers, RN, MSN1
(1)College of Education, Health, and Human Services, Kent State University, Kent, OH
(2)College of Nursing, Kent State University, Kent, OH

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to understand how to interpret instrument data based on applying Rasch modeling techniques.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to recognize the utility of the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS) for gauging workplace bullying climate.

Purpose: Workplace bullying is a major impediment to successful team relationships and job satisfaction in workplace environments, contributing to individual and interpersonal stress, tension, and burnout. Additionally, bullying affects worker productivity, especially in workplaces concerned with healthcare and healthcare education (Abe et al., 2010; Allan et al., 2009; Hutchinson et al., 2006; Randle, 2003). Authors investigated the psychometric properties of the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS) using Rasch Analysis in the context of workplace bullying. Catastrophization is a “tendency to focus on and exaggerate the threat value of painful stimuli and negatively evaluate…(one’s) own ability to deal with pain” (Keefe et al., 2002, p. 2).

Methods: One hundred fifty-four nursing faculty from Midwest US universities participated in this study. Bullying catastrophization was measured using the PCS, a 13-item instrument with items scored from 0 (Not at all) to 4 (All the time). 

Results: Data were analyzed using Rasch Analysis (i.e., Rating Scale Model), which produces an interval scale that arranges items according to how likely they are to be endorsed (i.e., item difficulty). Rasch Analysis is also used to diagnose problematic items in a survey. Person/Item Separation and Person/Item Reliability were high (i.e., > 1.00 and > .84, respectively; Coefficient Alpha = .97). The response scale from 0 to 4 was used as expected, with each step logit position increasing across the theta continuum. Finally, items 7, 10, 11, and 13 had high standardized fit statistics (i.e., > + 1.96). 

Conclusion: Examining the psychometric properties of the PCS in the context of workplace bullying supports utilization of a brief measure to gauge workplace climate as related to bullying in support of its diagnosis and potentially remedying problems before they become major impediments to productivity and individual well-being.