Development of the Disturbed Eating Characteristics Scales (DECS)

Kim Woodward*, Doris McIlwain, Alan Taylor

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract

    5 Downloads (Pure)


    Why is another measure of disturbed eating necessary? While there is a growing literature identifying links between certain emotion regulation styles and eating disturbances, much contention and contradictory evidence exists regarding the distinction between different specific eating disorder (ED) diagnoses in such relationships. This is possibly due to the common and overlapping features of different ED diagnoses and rather what is needed is exploration of the link between certain emotional styles and specific ED characteristics. However, in order to explore such relationships, a freely available self-report measure that reliably and validly identifies specific characteristics of eating disturbances is required. The current study aimed to develop such a measure. To this end an initial 66-item pool was devised and tested in Study 1 with a sample of 403 women. An exploratory factor analysis revealed a four-factor structure retaining 59 items. A confirmatory factory analysis (CFA) supported this factor structure and lead to the identification of four sub-scales 'Drive for thinness' (31-items), 'Binge' (10-items), 'Purge' (9-itmes), and 'Extreme-restraint' (9-items). These sub-scales were found to have high internal consistency and good reliability and validity. In Study 2 this factor structure was again found in a CFA with a sample of 749 women.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article numberP11
    Number of pages1
    JournalJournal of Eating Disorders
    Issue numberS1
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Nov 2014
    Event2014 Australia and New Zealand Academy for Eating Disorders Conference : Driven Bodies Driven Brains - Freemantle, Australia
    Duration: 22 Aug 201423 Aug 2014

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright the Author(s) 2014. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • eating disorder
    • emotion regulation
    • confirmatory factory analysis
    • exploratory factor analysis


    Dive into the research topics of 'Development of the Disturbed Eating Characteristics Scales (DECS)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this