Background: The Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) underwent revision in 1996 (BDI-II) with the goal of addressing DSM-IV depression criteria. The present study assessed psychometric properties of the German version of the BDI-II.
Patients and methods: The BDI-II was translated into German and evaluated in a series of studies with clinical and nonclinical samples.
Results: The content validity of the BDI-II has improved by following DSM-IV symptom criteria. Internal consistency was satisfactorily high (alpha>or=0.84), and retest reliability exceeded r>or=0.75 in nonclinical samples. Associations with construct-related scales (depression, dysfunctional cognitive constructs) were high, while those with nonsymptomatic personality assessment (NEO-FFI) were lower. The BDI-II differentiated well between different grades of depression and was sensitive to change.
Conclusion: The German BDI-II demonstrates good reliability and validity in clinical and nonclinical samples. It may now replace the older version of the BDI for assessing self-rated severity of depression and course of depressed symptoms under treatment.