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The subcomponents of affect scale (SAS): validating a widely used affect scale.



There is a need for a brief affect scale that also encompasses different components of affect relevant for researchers interested in physiological and health outcomes. The Subcomponents of Affect Scale (SAS) meets this need. This 18-item scale has nine positive and nine negative affect items encompassing six subscales (calm, well-being, vigour, depression, anxiety, anger). Previous research using the SAS has demonstrated its predictive validity, but no work has tested its subscale structure or longitudinal validity.


Data from the Common Cold Project in which individuals (N = 610) completed the SAS over the course of seven days were used.


Confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated the reliability of the subscale structure of the SAS across seven days (positive affect subscale structure: CFIs ≥ 0.98; negative affect subscale structure: CFIs ≥ 0.94 with day 6 CFI = 0.91) and tests of factorial invariance showed the scale is valid to use over time.


These results confirm the psychometric validity of the subscale structure of the SAS and imply that the subscales can be used longitudinally, allowing for its use in health research as well as non-health research that can benefit from its subscale structure and longitudinal capabilities.

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