The Emotion Regulation Questionnaire: Psychometric Properties and Relations with Affective Symptoms in a United States General Community Sample

David A. Preece, Rodrigo Becerra, Penelope Hasking, Peter M. McEvoy, Mark Boyes, Shannon Sauer-Zavala, Wai Chen, James J. Gross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Background: Difficulties in emotion regulation are a key risk factor for affective disorders. The Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (ERQ) is a 10-item measure of two emotion regulation strategies, cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression. It is widely used tool in the United States, however, most psychometric studies of the ERQ have so far been conducted with college students and some researchers have recently questioned its factorial validity in non-student samples. In this study, we conducted the first confirmatory factor analysis study of the ERQ in a United States general community sample. Method: We examined the ERQ's factor structure, measurement invariance across age, education and gender categories, internal consistency reliability, and concurrent validity with a sample of 508 adults. Results: The intended two-factor model (cognitive reappraisal, expressive suppression) was an excellent fit to the data, and this structure was invariant across different age, education, and gender categories. Both ERQ scale scores had good omega and alpha reliabilities, and correlated as expected with depression and anxiety symptoms. Cognitive reappraisal was negatively correlated with these symptoms, whereas expressive suppression was positively correlated with these symptoms. Limitations: We did not include a clinical sample and future psychometric studies of the ERQ in specialised clinical populations would be useful. Conclusions: The ERQ appears to have strong psychometric properties when used with general community members from the United States. ERQ scores can be confidently used and compared across adults of different ages, genders, and educational backgrounds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-30
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Mark Boyes is supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council, Australia (Investigator Grant 1173043).

Funding Information:
Ethical approval for this study was provided by the University of Western Australia Human Research Ethics Committee. The conditions of this ethics committee were followed. All participants provided informed consent for their data to be used.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021


  • Emotion Regulation Questionnaire
  • Factor structure
  • General community
  • Psychometric
  • United States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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