The Shift and Persist model provides an informative framework to understand how adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer patients and survivors (ages 15–39) may withstand stress and thrive despite adversity. The goal of the present study was to examine the psychometric properties of the Shift and Persist Questionnaire (SPQ) in this population and provide guidelines for interpretation.
AYA cancer patients and survivors were recruited via an online research panel. Participants reported demographics and health history and completed the SPQ and Patient-Reported Outcome Measurement Information System 29-item profile (PROMIS®-29). We evaluated the structural validity, internal consistency, and construct validity of the SPQ. Minimally important differences (MIDs) were estimated to inform SPQ score interpretation.
572 eligible individuals completed the survey. On average, participants were aged 24 (SD = 7) at evaluation. Of the participants, 43.5% were female, 77.1% were white, and 17.5% were Hispanic (across races). The two-factor structure of the SPQ demonstrated very good structural validity (CFI > 0.95, SRMR < 0.08), and construct validity with PROMIS-29® domains (convergent Rs = 0.17 to 0.43, divergent Rs = − 0.11 to − 0.51). Internal consistency was adequate (ω = 0.76–0.83). Recommended MIDs were 1 point for the Shift subscale, 1–2 point(s) for the Persist subscale, and 2–3 points for the total SPQ score.
The SPQ is a psychometrically sound measure of skills that contribute to resilience in AYA cancer patients and survivors. MID recommendations enhance the interpretability of the SPQ in this population. Future studies examining shifting and persisting in this population may benefit from administering the SPQ.