The emotion regulation questionnaire: psychometric properties in general community samples
School of Arts and Humanities
The Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (ERQ) is a 10-item self-report measure of 2 emotion regulation strategies, cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression. It is a widely used measure of emotion regulation, but its factor structure has rarely been examined outside of university student samples, and some authors have recently questioned its factorial validity in general community samples. In this study, we examine the psychometric properties of the ERQ (original English version) in 3 Australian general community samples (N = 300, 400, 348). Confirmatory factor analyses in each sample demonstrated that the traditional 2-factor model (comprised of cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression factors) was replicable and an excellent fit to the data. In all samples, ERQ cognitive reappraisal (α = .89–.90) and expressive suppression (α = .76–.80) scores had acceptable to excellent levels of internal consistency reliability. As expected, cognitive reappraisal scores were significantly negatively correlated with psychological distress and alexithymia, whereas expressive suppression scores were significantly positively correlated with psychological distress and alexithymia. We conclude that, similar to previous findings in student samples, the ERQ has strong psychometric properties in general community samples and can therefore be used confidently regardless of participants’ student status.