Validation of the Written Administration of the Short Literacy Survey.

Dageforde LA, Cavanaugh KL, Moore DE, Harms K, Wright A, Pinson CW, Feurer ID
J Health Commun. 2015 20 (7): 835-42

PMID: 26073801 · PMCID: PMC4698961 · DOI:10.1080/10810730.2015.1018572

Most health literacy assessments are time consuming and administered verbally. Written self-administration of measures may facilitate more widespread assessment of health literacy. This study aimed to determine the intermethod reliability and concurrent validity of the written administration of the 3 subjective health literacy questions of the Short Literacy Survey (SLS). The Rapid Estimate of Adult Literacy in Medicine (REALM) and the shortened test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults (S-TOFHLA) were the reference measures of health literacy. Two hundred ninety-nine participants completed the written and verbal administrations of the SLS from June to December 2012. Intermethod reliability was demonstrated when (a) the written and verbal SLS score did not differ and (b) written and verbal scores were highly correlated. The written items were internally consistent (Cronbach's α = .733). The written total score successfully identified persons with sixth-grade equivalency or less for literacy on the REALM (AUROC = 0.753) and inadequate literacy on the S-TOFHLA (AUROC = 0. 869). The written administration of the SLS is reliable, valid, and is effective in identifying persons with limited health literacy.

MeSH Terms (10)

Adult Aged Female Health Literacy Humans Male Middle Aged Reproducibility of Results Surveys and Questionnaires Writing

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