Adaptation and validation of the SF-36 Health Survey for use in Australia

J Clin Epidemiol. 1998 Nov;51(11):961-7. doi: 10.1016/s0895-4356(98)00087-0.


This article reports on the process undertaken to adapt the U.S. version of the SF-36 to an Australian setting. In addition, the results of psychometric testing, using the International Quality of Life Assessment (IQOLA) Project process and standards, is also reported. The adaptation process involved a number of steps including: a series of forward and backward translations; ratings of the difficulty of translating the SF-36 and the quality of the resulting translation. To assess the psychometric properties of the Australian form, a random sample of people residing in the Hunter region of New South Wales, Australia, were invited to complete the SF-36 with 855 respondents consenting to complete the measure. Principal components analyses supported the assumption of two factors underlying the measure with the percentage of variance explained by these factors ranging from between 0.66 and 0.77. Demonstrable internal consistency (both item and scale) and test-retest reliability were also found.

MeSH terms

  • Australia / epidemiology
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Health Status Indicators*
  • Humans
  • Psychometrics*
  • Quality of Life*