Psychometric properties of the Marital Adjustment Scale during cognitive therapy for depression: New research opportunities.

Jeffrey R. Vittengl, Lee Anna Clark, Michael E. Thase, Robin B. Jarrett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Poor dyadic adjustment in marital or similar relationships is common among patients seeking individual cognitive therapy (CT) for major depressive disorder (MDD). Here we examined the psychometric properties of the marital adjustment subscale (MAS) of the Social Adjustment Scale–Self-report (SAS-SR; Weissman & Bothwell, 1976). Among married or cohabiting patients receiving individual CT for recurrent MDD (N = 306) in the context of two randomized controlled trials, the MAS demonstrated moderate internal consistency and test–retest reliability, strong convergence with the Dyadic Adjustment Scale (Spanier, 1976), and moderate relations with interpersonal problems and depressive symptoms. Controlling baseline depressive symptom severity, greater pre-CT relationship discord on the MAS predicted less reduction in depressive symptom severity and lower odds of depression remission during CT. These results support the reliability, validity, and potential utility of the MAS. Using the MAS may help investigators “mine” existing data sets including the SAS-SR to further understanding of dyadic functioning and its potential impact on depression treatment and other health outcomes. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved) Public Significance Statement: This study provided evidence that the Marital Adjustment Scale is a useful measure of the quality of marital or similar relationships and helps predict whether patients with depression will have good outcomes if treated with cognitive therapy. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1028-1036
Number of pages9
JournalPsychological Assessment
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2020


  • Dyadic Adjustment Scale
  • Marital Adjustment Scale
  • cognitive therapy
  • reliability
  • validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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