BioPsychoSocial Assessment Tools for the Elderly - Assessment Summary Sheet

Test: Care-Giving Burden Scale (CBS)

 Year: 1994

Domain: Social

Assessment Tool Category: Care Giving 

Variations/Translations: English and Chinese version (Chien & Norman, 2004)

Setting: Not specific

Method of Delivery: Self-administered questionnaire completed by caregiver

Description: This is a 13-item questionnaire developed to measure the subjective burden of the caregiver. It was originally developed using a sample of informal caregivers of psychogeriatric patients. The CBS has two subscales that measure Relationship (7 items) and Personal Consequences (6 items). Each item is rated using a 5-point Likert scale ranging from “disagree very much” to “agree very much”.

 Scoring/Interpretation: Once the questionnaire is completed, the items are recoded on a dichotomous scale where original items rated 1 or 2 are given a value of 0 and items originally rated 3,4, or 5 are given a value of 1.  No information is available regarding interpretation of the score.

Time to Administer: Approximately 10-15 minutes

 Availability: Available online with subscription

 Software: SPSS


Quantitative/Qualitative: Quantitative

Validity (Quantitative): Validation with Zung Depression and deviant behaviour memory or orientation show strong correlations. In addition, analysis of construct validity showed strong correlations of care-giving burden with depression of the carer and deviant behaviour of the patient.

Reliability (Quantitative): Internal consistency of the CBS, as assessed by Cronbach’s alpha was 0.849. The correlations between the CBS, the SCL-90 (Symptom Checklist 90) and GDS-S (Group Decision Support System) ranged from 0.435 and 0.698. Item reliability is 0.84, relationship subscale reliability is 0.77, and personal consequences subscale reliability is 0.77 as well.


Chien, W., & Norman, I. (2004). The validity and reliability of a Chinese version of the family burden interview schedule. Nursing research, 53(5), 314-322.

Fur, J., Wang, S., Liu, H., & Wang, H. (1999). The Caregiving Burden Scale among Chinese Caregivers among Alzheimer Patients. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders, 10, 186-191.

Gerritsen, J. C., & Van der Ende, P. C. (1994). The Development of a Care-giving Burden Scale. Age and Aging, 23, 483-491.

Montgomery RJV, EF Borgatta & ML Borgatta. (2000). Societal and Family Change in the Burden of Care." In Who Should Care for the Elderly? An East-West Value Divide. Edited by WT Liu & H Kendig. Singapore: The National University of Singapore Press.

Montogomery, R., Gonyea, J., & Hooyman, N. (1985). Caregiving and the Experience of Subjective and Objective Burden. Family Relations, 34, 19-26.

Comments: Should not be confused with Caregiver Burden Scale. It has been used frequently with the Chinese Alzheimer’s population.