The quality of working life questionnaire for cancer survivors (QWLQ-CS): factorial structure, internal consistency, construct validity and reproducibility

BMC Cancer. 2018 Jan 10;18(1):66. doi: 10.1186/s12885-017-3966-1.


Background: To assess the factorial structure, internal consistency, construct validity and reproducibility of the Quality of Working Life Questionnaire for Cancer Survivors (QWLQ-CS).

Methods: An Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) was performed on QWLQ-CS data from a sample of employed cancer survivors to establish the final number of items and factorial structure of the QWLQ-CS. Internal consistency was assessed using Cronbach's alpha. In a second sample of (self-)employed cancer survivors, construct validity was tested by convergent validity (correlations of QWLQ-CS with construct-related questionnaires), and discriminative validity (difference in QWLQ-CS scores between cancer survivors and employed people without cancer). In a subgroup of stable cancer survivors subtracted from the second sample, reproducibility was evaluated by Intraclass Correlation Coefficient (ICC) and Standard Error of Measurement (SEM).

Results: EFA on QWLQ-CS data of 302 cancer survivors resulted in 23 items and five factors. The internal consistency of the QWLQ-CS was Cronbach's α = 0.91. Convergent validity on data of 130 cancer survivors resulted in r = 0.61-0.70. QWLQ-CS scores of these cancer survivors statistically differed (p = 0.04) from employed people without cancer (N = 45). Reproducibility of QWLQ-CS data from 87 cancer survivors demonstrated an ICC of 0.84 and a SEM of 9.59.

Conclusions: The five-factor QWLQ-CS with 23 items and adequate internal consistency, construct validity, and reproducibility at group level can be used in clinical and occupational healthcare, and research settings.

Keywords: Cancer survivors; Psychometric properties; Quality of working life; Questionnaire; Return to work; Work continuation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cancer Survivors / psychology*
  • Employment / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Neoplasms / psychology
  • Psychometrics*
  • Quality of Life
  • Return to Work
  • Surveys and Questionnaires