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Schaufeli et and Measurement Educational al. / Psychological Measurement 10.1177/0013164405282471 of W ork Engagement

The Measurement of Work Engagement With a Short Questionnaire
A Cross-National Study
Wilmar B. Schaufeli Arnold B. Bakker
Utrecht University

Educational and Psychological Measurement Volume 66 Number 4 August 2006 701-716 © 2006 Sage Publications 10.1177/0013164405282471http://epm.sagepub.com hosted at http://online.sagepub.com

Marisa Salanova
Jaume I University
This article reports on the development of a short questionnaire to measure work engagement—a positive work-related state of fulfillment that is characterized by vigor, dedication, and absorption. Data were collected in 10 different countries (N = 14,521), and results indicated that the original17-item Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (UWES) can be shortened to 9 items (UWES-9). The factorial validity of the UWES-9 was demonstrated using confirmatory factor analyses, and the three scale scores have good internal consistency and test-retest reliability. Furthermore, a two-factor model with a reduced Burnout factor (including exhaustion and cynicism) and an expanded Engagement factor(including vigor, dedication, absorption, and professional efficacy) fit best to the data. These results confirm that work engagement may be conceived as the positive antipode of burnout. It is concluded that the UWES-9 scores has acceptable psychometric properties and that the instrument can be used in studies on positive organizational behavior. Keywords: work engagement; measurement; burnout; UtrechtWork Engagement Scale (UWES)

ince the beginning of this century, increased attention has been paid to what has been coined positive psychology: the scientific study of human strength and optimal functioning (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000). This approach is considered
Authors’ Note: The authors express their gratitude to the following colleagues who have provided data (in alphabeticalorder): Sarah Jane Cotton (Australia), Edgar Bresó (Spain), Jan de Jonge (Netherlands), Maureen Dollard (Australia), Martin Euwema (Netherlands), Esther Greenglass (Canada), Asbjørn Grimsmo (Norway), Gabriele Haeslich (Germany), Jari Hakanen (Finland), Sandrine Hollet (France), Saar Langelaan (Netherlands), Pascale Le Blanc (Netherlands), Susana Llorens (Spain), Stig Berge Matthiesen (Norway), MariaPeeters (Netherlands), Astrid Richardsen (Norway), Peter Richter (Germany), Ian Rothmann (South Africa), Katariina Salmela-Aro (Finland), Sabine Sonnentag (Germany), Willem van



702 Educational and Psychological Measurement

to supplement the traditional focus of psychology on disease, damage, disorder, and disability. The recent trend to concentrate on optimal functioning alsohas aroused attention in organizational psychology, as illustrated by Luthans’s (2002) recent plea for “the study of positively oriented human resource strengths and psychological capacities that can be measured, developed, and effectively managed for performance improvement in today’s workplace” (p. 698). One of these positive states is work engagement, which is considered to be the antipode ofburnout. The current article is about the development and psychometric evaluation of a short self-report questionnaire to measure work engagement. Contrary to those who suffer from burnout, engaged employees have a sense of energetic and effective connection with their work activities, and they see themselves as able to deal well with the demands of their jobs. Work engagement is defined as apositive, fulfilling work-related state of mind that is characterized by vigor, dedication, and absorption (Schaufeli & Salanova, in press; Schaufeli, Salanova, Gonzalez-Romá, & Bakker, 2002). Rather than a momentary and specific state, engagement refers to a more persistent and pervasive affective-cognitive state that is not focused on any particular object, event, individual, or behavior. Vigor is...
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