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Chen, Y and Yang, Z (2018) Validity and reliability of rating scales for subjective breathing resistance of wearing respirators. Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, 16(06), 837–49.

  • Type: Journal Article
  • Keywords: Reliability; Validity; Comfort; Human factor engineering; Respirators; Subjective breathing resistances;
  • ISBN/ISSN: 1726-0531
  • URL: https://doi.org/10.1108/JEDT-05-2018-0082
  • Abstract:
    Investigating the subjective breathing resistance of wearing respirators requires a valid and reliable technique to measure breathing resistance. The purpose of this study is to test the validity and reliability of several rating scales and select the best for investigation of breathing resistance. Design/methodology/approach The authors designed three scales, that is, BRX scale, CP-100 scale and RVAS scale, and 30 subjects were separated into three groups, each group with a different scale. They sat for 5 min and walked for 5 min while wearing three models of respirators. After each trial, subjects were asked to complete subjective ratings of breathing resistance. Reliability was examined by the coefficient of Cronbach’s α, and validity was examined through content validity, discriminant validity and criterion validity. Generally, subjects were capable of reporting their sensation of breathing resistance by using the rating scale technique. However, the accuracy of rating strongly depended upon the properties of the scale. Findings The CP-100 scale was found to be highly reliable and most valid for rating subjective breath resistance. The validated CP-100 scale is very sensitive and accurate. Originality/value This is the first paper to select the best subjective scale for investigation of breathing resistance of respirators. The CP-100 scale will find wide applications in subjective breathing resistance evaluation for the use of respirators in industrial benchmarking activities. It will introduce the human factor engineering into the respirator manufacturing to improve the comfort of respirators.