Date of Award

May 2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Jonathan W. Kanter

Committee Members

Christine Larson, Shawn P. Cahill


Behavioral Activation, Depression, Latinos, Measurement


Accumulating empirical support for Behavioral Activation (BA) for depression's efficacy has drawn attention to its promise as a treatment modality with ease of dissemination. Given its pragmatic approach, it may be well-suited to address depression in communities that have been traditionally hard to reach, such as those inhabited by Latinos in the U.S. BA for Latinos (BAL) with depression has garnered support as a viable treatment option. Further treatment evaluation will require the use of a validated measure of activation, which is the treatment's hypothesized mechanism of change, to measure treatment progress and outcome. Kanter and colleagues developed the Behavioral Activation for Depression Scale (BADS) which is designed to track activation, or when and how clients became activated throughout the course of treatment. Although the original measure demonstrated acceptable psychometric properties, a short form was developed to improve on the original measure. The 9-item BADS-SF has demonstrated stronger psychometric properties. It may prove to be a valuable asset in further evaluating BA for Latinos. Two studies were conducted to examine the short form's psychometric properties with samples of Spanish-speaking Latinos. The measure's two-factor model consisting of the Activation and Avoidance subscales was evaluated in Study 1and the measure's predictive validity was examined in Study 2. Both studies evaluated the measure's internal consistency reliability and its concurrent validity. Results do not support the BADS-SF as a valid measure of activation and avoidance. However, these studies may not represent adequate tests of the measure and thus further evaluation is needed.