Adaptation, psychometric properties and feasibility of the Professionalism Scale Germany

Z Evid Fortbild Qual Gesundhwes. 2016;113:66-75. doi: 10.1016/j.zefq.2016.04.002. Epub 2016 May 11.


Introduction: Pre- and postgraduate education is meant to be competency-based. Over the last two decades various competency frameworks have been published. An important aspect of competency is professionalism, being discussed widely in the literature while a clear-cut definition is still lacking. The purpose of this study was to translate the Nijmegen Professionalism Scale into the German language, to adapt the scale to the German setting and to examine the psychometric properties, test-retest reliability and feasibility of the culturally adapted instrument designed to assess professionalism in general practice, in addition to the validity of the concept of professionalism and to testify the transfer across linguistic, cultural and societal differences.

Method: After translating the Nijmegen Professional Scale into German, we conducted its cultural adaptation, the German Professionalism Scale (Pro-D). Its psychometric properties were assessed using Cronbach's α, descriptive statistics, and test-retest reliability. The validation of the construct was analysed by confirmatory factor analysis. Feasibility was confirmed in interviews with GP trainees and their trainers.

Results: A total of 133 trainees completed the Pro-D. The Pro-D showed high internal consistency (Cronbach's α 0.93) and good test-retest reliability (Spearman's rank correlation and Wilcoxon's matched-pairs test) for the different domains. Confirmatory factor analysis was unable to establish construct validity. Change in sensitivity of the instrument was good. Statements of interviews confirmed the feasibility of the new instrument.

Conclusions: We found good psychometric properties for the Pro-D. This might indicate transferability of the concept across linguistic, cultural and societal differences although the concept of professionalism was not replicated in a confirmatory factor analysis.

Keywords: Allgemeinmedizin; General practice; Professionalität; Psychometrische Eigenschaften; Rückmeldung; Weiterbildung; feedback; postgraduate training; professionalism; psychometric properties.

MeSH terms

  • Evidence-Based Medicine*
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Professionalism*
  • Psychometrics* / statistics & numerical data
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Translating