Development of a direct observation Measure of Environmental Qualities of Activity Settings Journal Articles uri icon

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  • AimThe aim of this study was to develop an observer‐rated measure of aesthetic, physical, social, and opportunity‐related qualities of leisure activity settings for young people (with or without disabilities).MethodEighty questionnaires were completed by sets of raters who independently rated 22 community/home activity settings. The scales of the 32‐item Measure of Environmental Qualities of Activity Settings (MEQAS; Opportunities for Social Activities, Opportunities for Physical Activities, Pleasant Physical Environment, Opportunities for Choice, Opportunities for Personal Growth, and Opportunities to Interact with Adults) were determined using principal components analyses. Test–retest reliability was determined for eight activity settings, rated twice (4–6wk interval) by a trained rater.ResultsThe factor structure accounted for 80% of the variance. The Kaiser‐Meyer‐Olkin Measure of Sampling Adequacy was 0.73. Cronbach's alphas for the scales ranged from 0.76 to 0.96, and interrater reliabilities (ICCs) ranged from 0.60 to 0.93. Test–retest reliabilities ranged from 0.70 to 0.90.InterpretationResults suggest that theMEQAShas a sound factor structure and preliminary evidence of internal consistency, interrater, and test–retest reliability. TheMEQASis the first observer‐completed measure of environmental qualities of activity settings. TheMEQASallows researchers to assess comprehensively qualities and affordances of activity settings, and can be used to design and assess environmental qualities of programs for young people.


  • King, Gillian
  • Rigby, Patty
  • Batorowicz, Beata
  • McMain‐Klein, Margot
  • Petrenchik, Theresa
  • Thompson, Laura
  • Gibson, Michelle

publication date

  • August 2014