Research on health disparities and determinants of health disparities among ethnic minorities and vulnerable older populations necessitates use of self-report measures. Most established instruments were developed on mainstream populations and may need adaptation for research with diverse populations. Although information is increasingly available on various problems using these measures in diverse groups, there is little guidance on how to modify the measures. We provide a framework of issues to consider when modifying measures for diverse populations.
We describe reasons for considering modifications, the types of information that can be used as a basis for making modifications, and the types of modifications researchers have made. We recommend testing modified measures to assure they are appropriate. Suggestions are made on reporting modifications in publications using the measures.
The issues open a dialogue about what appropriate guidelines would be for researchers adapting measures in studies of ethnically diverse populations.
Keywords: Measurement, modifying measures, adapting measures, minority aging, health disparities