|The Bergen Work Addiction Scale|
|Nation - Workplace|
|TS-Si News Service|
|Wednesday, 25 April 2012 02:00|
Bergen, Norway. Researchers have developed and applied The Bergen Work Addiction Scale, showing that it reliably differentiates between workaholics and non-workaholics.
A number of studies show that work addiction has been associated with insomnia, health problems, burnout and stress as well as creating conflict between work and family life.
In the wake of globalisation, new technology and blurred boundaries between work and private life, we are witnessing an apparent increase in work addiction. Some people seem driven to work excessively and compulsively. Often considered work addicts (or workaholics), there has been no way to confirm this with the standardized application of diagnostic criteria to determine of the core elements of addiction are present.
The Bergen Work Addiction Scale
There are seven basic criteria used to identify work addiction:
● You think of how you can free up more time to work.
● You spend much more time working than initially intended.
● You work in order to reduce feelings of guilt, anxiety, helplessness and depression.
● You have been told by others to cut down on work without listening to them.
● You become stressed if you are prohibited from working.
● You deprioritize hobbies, leisure activities, and exercise because of your work.
● You work so much that it has negatively influenced your health.
All items are scored on the following scale: (1) Never, (2) Rarely, (3) Sometimes, (4) Often, and (5) Always.
Andreassen's study shows that scoring of Often or Always on at least four of the seven items may suggest that you are a workaholic.As reported in the Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, researchers from Norway and the United Kingdom have developed the new instrument to add value to work addiction research and practice. The Bergen Work Addiction Scale was developed at the Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen (UiB) in collaboration with the Bergen Clinics Foundation, Norway, and Nottingham Trent University, UK.
Cecilie Schou Andreassen, PhD., is Associate Senior Consultant at Right Management, Owner/Director at Schou Andreassen Consulting, and an Associate Researcher in Psychology at the University of Bergen (UiB).
Photo courtesy of
Ole Kristian Olsen.Cecilie Schou Andreassen, a psychologist at the University of Bergen (UiB), leads the team, leveraging her background as a clinical psychologist specialist. Also, she has become familiar with the real-life implications of work addiction during her work as a consultant for the private sector.
By testing themselves with the scale, people can find out their degree of work addiction: non-addicted, mildly addicted or workaholic, Andreassen explains.
12,135 Norwegian employees from 25 different industries participated in development activities. The scale was administered to two cross-occupational samples and reflects the seven core elements of addiction:
2. mood modification,
6. relapse, and
The results show the scale as reliably differentiating between workaholics and non-workaholics.
Since the scale is a standardized tool, the developers think it could facilitate treatment and estimates of work addiction prevalence in the general population worldwide.
CitationDevelopment of a work addiction scale. Cecilie Schou Andreassen, Mark D Griffiths, Jørn Hetland, Ståle Pallesen. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology 2012; doi:10.1111/j.1467-9450.2012.00947.x
Research into excessive work has gained increasing attention over the last 20 years. Terms such as workaholism, work addiction and excessive work have been used interchangeably. Given the increase in empirical research, this study presents the development of the Bergen Work Addiction Scale (BWAS), a new psychometrically validated scale for the assessment of work addiction. A pool of 14 items, with two reflecting each of seven core elements of addiction (i.e., salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal, conflict, relapse, and problems) was initially constructed. The items were then administered to two samples, one recruited by a web survey following a television broadcast about workaholism (n = 11,769) and one comprising participants in the second wave of a longitudinal internet-based survey about working life (n = 368). The items with the highest corrected item-total correlation from within each of the seven addiction elements were retained in the final scale. The assumed one-factor solution of the refined seven-item scale was acceptable (root mean square error of approximation = 0.077, Comparative Fit Index = 0.96, Tucker-Lewis Index = 0.95) and the internal reliability of the two samples were 0.84 and 0.80, respectively. The scores of the BWAS converged with scores on other workaholism scales, except for a Work Enjoyment subscale. A suggested cut-off for categorization of workaholics showed good discriminative ability in terms of working hours, leadership position, and subjective health complaints. It is concluded that the BWAS has good psychometric properties.
Keywords: assessment, psychometrics, scale, work addiction, workaholism.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 25 April 2012 05:44|