The development, validity, and reliability of the OARS multidimensional functional assessment questionnaire

J Gerontol. 1981 Jul;36(4):428-34. doi: 10.1093/geronj/36.4.428.


This report outlines the development, validity, and reliability of Part A of the OARS Multidimensional Functional Assessment Questionnaire. Part A permits assessment of individuals' functioning on each of five dimensions (social, economic, mental health, physical health and self-care capacity), the detailed information in each area being summarized on a 6-point rating scale by a rater. Content and consensual validity were ensured by the manner of construction. Information on criterion validity was obtained for all dimensions except social. The criterion used and their associated Kendall's Tau values were: an objective economic scale (.62); ratings based on personal interviews by geropsychiatrists (.60); physician's associates (.82); and physical therapists (.89). For 11 geographically dispersed raters from research and clinic settings, intraclass correlational coefficients, based on 30 subjects, ranged from .66 on physical health to .87 in self-care capacity; 74% of the ratings were in complete agreement, 24% differed by one point.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Health Services Needs and Demand*
  • Health Services Research*
  • Health Services for the Aged*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*