Overview

The Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q) is a 28-item self-reported questionnaire adapted from the semi-structured interview Eating Disorder Examination (EDE) and designed to assess the range and severity of features associated with a diagnosis of eating disorder using 4 subscales (Restraint, Eating Concern, Shape Concern and Weight Concern) and a global score.

Terms of use

The EDE-Q (and its items) is under copyright. It is freely available for non-commercial research use only and no permission need to be sought. For commercial use of the EDE-Q contact: credo@medsci.ox.ac.uk

Scale/Subscales

Population

The EDE-Q can be used with anyone over the age of 14. If required for younger individuals, the adolescent version EDE-A (see Other Versions below) can be used but the developers advise against using this measure with young people below the age of 12.

There is need for further research examining the psychometric properties of the EDE-Q in ethnically diverse groups. Research has identified some racial/ethnic variations in survey completion and discrepant responding (Kelly, Cotter, Lydecker & Mazzeo, 2017) as well as lack of measurement invariance between some ethnic groups (Serier, Smith & Yeater, 2018).

Administration

The EDE-Q is a self-report measure which can be completed in person or electronically.

Scoring

The EDE-Q generates two types of data: frequency data on key behavioural features of eating disorders in terms of number of episodes of the behaviour, and subscale scores reflecting the severity of characteristics of eating disorders. The subscales are Restraint, Eating Concern, Shape Concern and Weight Concern. Please consult the user guide for more information on how to calculate the subscales:

Interpretation

Higher scores on the global scale and subscales denote more problematic eating behaviours and attitudes. Carey et al. (2019) published norms for UK adult community males and females, which can be found here: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/141195/1/Manuscript_PAS_2018_2281.pdf

Normative data for UK early adolescent girls can be found in Carter, Stewart and Fairburn (2001), and normative data for UK adolescent boys and girls can be found in White, Haycraft, Goodwin and Meyer (2014).

Research has also produced normative data for clinical samples, for example Jennings and Phillips (2017) have published norms for a clinical sample of female adolescents with Anorexia Nervosa.

A cut-off of 4 on the global score is generally used as clinically significant (for more information, see Meule, 2019).

Psychometric properties

Property Definition EDE-Q

Internal consistency

Whether several items that propose to measure the same general construct produce a similar score.

The EDE-Q has demonstrated reliability across multiple studies (see Berg, Peterson, Frazier, & Crow, 2011) and the EDE-Q subscales demonstrate acceptable internal consistency (Luce, & Crowther, 1999; Mond, Hay, Rodgers, Owen, & Beumont, 2004; Bardone-Cone & Agras, 2017).

Test-retest reliability

Degree to which the same respondents have the same score after a period when a trait should not have changed.

Test-retest reliability is generally reported as good for the EDE-Q subscales with female undergraduate students (Luce, & Crowther, 1999) and adults (Reas, Grilo, & Masheb, 2006).

Convergent validity

Degree to which two measures of constructs that theoretically should be related, are in fact related.

Studies of convergent validity comparing the EDE-Q with its interview equivalent (the EDE) have generally demonstrated good agreement between the measures (Black & Wilson, 1996; Wilfley, Schwartz, Spurrel, & Fairburn, 1997; Bardone-Cone & Agras, 2017).

Construct validity

The degree to which a test measures what it claims, or purports, to be measuring.

The overall measure seems to be useful but there is disagreement regarding the factor structure of this measure, particularly around subscales and scoring. Carey et al. (2019) suggested that the EDE-Q factor structure may require further reassessment, with greater focus on the qualitative differences in interpretation of EDE-Q items between females and males.

Discriminative validity

Whether the measure scores can distinguish between individuals with particular characteristics (e.g. diagnosis)

The EDE-Q global score was found to be highly accurate in discriminating individuals with an eating disorder from those without, and moderately accurate in discriminating individuals with binge eating disorder from those with obesity (Aardoom, Dingemans, Slof Op’t Landt, & Furth, 2012). Two other studies have also suggested that the EDE-Q could accurately discriminate between individuals with an eating disorder and those without (Mond et al., 2004; Mond et al., 2008).


Translations

The EDE-Q is widely used and available in other languages. Please contact the developers for more information.

Other Versions

Adolescents

The Eating Disorder Examination for Adolescents (EDE-A) is an adapted version of the EDE-Q, with 36 items and yielding the same four subscales and global score. The EDE-A version can be accessed here.

The CORC team calculates subscale scores as follows (CYP-IAPT report):

  • Restraint = (Item 1 + Item 2 + Item 3 + Item 4 + Item 5) / 5;
  • Eating Concern = (Item 6 + Item 7 + Item 9 + Item 15 + Item 34) / 5;
  • Weight Concern = (Item 11 + Item 14 + Item 29 + Item 31 + Item 32) / 5;
  • Shape Concern = (Item 10 + Item 11 + Item 12 + Item 13 + Item 30 + Item 33 + Item 35 + Item 36) / 8;
  • Global Score = (Restraint + Eating Concern + Weight Concern + Shape Concern) / 4

To aid the interpretation of EDE-A scores, normative data for UK early adolescents can be found in Carter, Stewart and Fairburn (2001).

Parents

A version for Parents and Carers was also employed by Lydecker and Grilo (2017) by adapting the original EDE-Q (Lydecker & Grilo, 2017). Please contact these researchers if you need further information about this version.

Short version

A 12-item short form (EDE-QS) of the EDE-Q was developed and validated by Gideon et al. (2018).

References

Aardoom, J. J., Dingemans, A. E., Slof Op't Landt. M. C. T., Van Furth, E. F. (2012). Norms and discriminative validity of the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q). Eating Behaviors, 13(4), 305-309

Bardone-Cone, A. M., & Agras, W. S. (2007). Psychometric properties of eating disorder instruments in black and white young women: internal consistency, temporal stability, and validity. Psychological Assessment, 19, 356–62

Berg, K. C., Peterson, C. B., Frazier, P., Crow, S. J. (2011). Psychometric evaluation of the eating disorder examination and Eating Disorder Examination-Questionnaire: A systematic review of the literature. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 45, 428-438

Black, C. M. D, Wilson, G. T. (1996). Assessment of eating disorders: interview versus questionnaire. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 30, 187–92

Carey, M., Kupeli, N., Knight, R., Troop, N. A., Jenkinson, P. M., & Preston, C. (2019). Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q): Norms and psychometric properties in UK females and males. Psychological Assessment, 31(7), 839-850

Carter, J. C.,  Stewart, D. A., & Fairburn, C. G. (2001). Eating disorder examination questionnaire: Norms for young adolescent girls. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 39(5), 625–632

Fairburn, C. G., & Beglin, S. J. (1994). Assessment of eating disorders: interview or self-report questionnaire? International Journal of Eating Disorders, 16, 363–70

Fairburn, C., Cooper, Z., & O’Connor, M. (2014). Eating Disorder Examination (Edition 17.0D; April, 2014)

Gideon, N., Hawkes, N., Mond, J., Saunders, R., Tchanturia, K., et al. (2018). Development and psychometric validation of the EDE-QS, a 12 item short form of the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q). PLoS One, 13(11)

Jennings, K. M., & Phillips, K. E. (2017). Eating Disorder Examination-Questionnaire (EDE-Q): Norms for Clinical Sample of Female Adolescents with Anorexia Nervosa. Archives of psychiatric nursing, 31(6), 578–581

Kelly, N. R., Cotter, E. W., Lydecker, J. A., & Mazzeo, S. E. (2017). Missing and discrepant data on the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q): Quantity, quality, and implications. Eating Behaviors, 24, 1-6

Luce, K. H., & Crowther, J. H. (1999). The reliability of the Eating Disorder Examination - Self Report Questionnaire Version (EDE-Q). International Journal of Eating Disorders, 25, 349–51

Lydecker, J. A., Grilo, C. M. (2917). Does your child's weight influence how you judge yourself as a parent? A cross-sectional study to define and examine parental overvaluation of weight/shape. Preventive Medicine. 105, 265-270

Meule, A. (2019). Reconsidering the use of cut-off scores for Eating Disorder Examination – Questionnaire. Eating Disorders, 16, 1-5

Mond, J. M., Hay, P. J., Rodgers, B., Owen, C., Beumont, P. J. V. (2004). Validity of the eating disorder examination questionnaire (EDE-Q) in screening for eating disorders in community samples. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 42, 551–67

Mond, J. M., Hay, P.J., Rodgers, B. & Owen, C. (2006). Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q): Norms for young adult women. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 44 (1), 53-62

Mond, M., Myers, T. C., Crosby, R. D., Hay, P. J., Rodgers, J. F., Morgan, et al. (2008). Screening for eating disorders in primary care: EDE-Q versus SCOFF. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 46, 612-622

Reas, D. L., Grilo, C. M., Masheb, R. M. (2006). Reliability of the eating disorder examination-questionnaire in patients with binge eating disorder. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 44, 43–51

Serier, K. N., Smith, J. E., & Yeater, E. A. (2018). Confirmatory factor analysis and measurement invariance of the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q) in a non-clinical sample of non-Hispanic White and Hispanic women. Eating behaviors, 31, 53–59

White, H. J., Haycraft, E., Goodwin, H. & Meyer, C. (2014). Eating disorder examination questionnaire: factor structure for adolescent girls and boys. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 47 (1), 99-104

Wilfley, D. E., Schwartz, M. B., Spurrel, E. B., & Fairburn, C. G. (1997). Assessing the specific psychopathology of binge eating patients: Interview or self-report? International Journal of Eating Disorders, 35, 1151–9

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