Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS)

BioPsychoSocial Assessment Tools for the Elderly - Assessment Summary Sheet

Test: Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS)


Year: 1979

Domain: Psychological

Assessment Tool Category: Depression


Variations/Translations: English, French and Swedish versions are available.


Setting: Clinical


Method of Delivery:  Assessment by clinician


Description:  This test is used by clinicians to assess the severity of depression among patients who have a diagnosis of depression. The MADRS includes 10 items and uses a 0 to 6 severity scale, scored following the interview. 

Scoring/Interpretation: Higher scores indicate increasing depressive symptoms. Ratings can be added to form an overall score (range 0 to 50); no weights are used. Cut-off points include: 0 to 6 – symptom absent, 7 to 19 – mild depression, 30 to 34 – moderate, 35 to 60 – severe depression.


Time to Administer: 20 to 60 minutes


Availability: Available in McDowell (2006)


Software: N/A


Website: N/A


Quantitative/Qualitative: Quantitative


Validity (Quantitative): Concurrent validity determined by correlating scores to the Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia (range r = 0.74-0.93, P < 0.0001). The MADRS was compared with the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression on clinical assessments of severity of depression. The correlation for the MADRS was 0.71, slightly higher than for the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (0.65).


Reliability (Quantitative):  The authors reported inter-rater reliability that ranged from 0.89 to 0.97 for various combinations of raters in small samples of 12 to 30 patients. Intraclass coefficients for this test fell between 0.66 and 0.82.


Müller-Thomsen T, Arlt S, Mann U, Maß R, Ganzer S. (2005) Detecting depression in Alzheimer's disease: evaluation of four different scales. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 20:271-6.

McDowell, I. (2006). Measuring Health: A guide to rating scales and questionnaires 3rd Ed. New York: Oxford University Press.

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