Brown et al (1986)

- Learn for clinical depression and Issues and Deates - Interviews

HideShow resource information
  • Created by: Daisy
  • Created on: 24-05-12 09:12


  • To see whther crisis support protects against onset depression even if their is low self esteem and a lack of general support
  • To see if a lack of support and low self esteem were vulnerability factors in depression
  • To see if the support of a husband, partner close relationship reduces the risk of depression (only women took part)
1 of 7


  • Women with husbands in a manual occupation with at least 1 child under 18 and were aged between 18-50 were recruited through their GP
  • 435 women were chosen who fitted the requirements and 395 were involved in the first part of the study.
  • At first contact measures of self esteem, personal ties and psychriatric histories were taken
  • 12 months later they were checked for any onset psychriatric disorder over that period and measures of social support and life event stress were also taken
  • Interviews were used to gather the data and was carried out bu experienced interviewers.
  • Some women were interviewed intensively to check for reliability
  • There was inter-rater reliabilty
2 of 7


  • In all 353 women agreed to the follow up interview (89% of the original sample)
  • There were 50 cases of depression at first contact and these women were excluded.
  • therefore 303 were interviewed to see if they had developed depression over the 12 months. About half of them (150) had experienced a severe event or major difficulty and 32 women had onset depression.
  • Of those 32 women , 91% had experienced a severe life event in the 6 months prior to the on set de[ression (involving loss, failure or disappointment)
  • Self esteem was looked at as well as a provoking agent (severe life event), 33% of those with a negative eveualtion of themselves developed depression in a response to a provoking agent (severe life event)


3 of 7

  • Compared to 13 % who developed depression in a response to a provoking agent but did not have a negative evealuation of self
  • Suggesting that those with low self esteem are more likely to develop depression when faced with a provoking agent than those with high self esteem.
  • With regard to social support , 94% of those women who had core crisis support said that it was helpful.
  • Of those women who felt let down with regard to support 42% (14 out 33) developed depression. Of those without support either at first contact or later , 44% developed depression.
  • Suggesting that social support is an important factor in whether someone develops depression or not.
4 of 7


  • That those who are married or had a close tie were liekly to develop depression (unless they confided in their husband and felt let down)
  • Low self esteem is implicated in  the onset of depression after a provoking agent. Self esteem in itself might be linked to whether a person has social support.
  • A povoking agent seems to be becessary for the onset off depression in most cases
5 of 7

Evaluation- Strengths

  • Strengths
  • The interviews gave the required deph and deatil needed for analysis of complex issues
  • There was inter-rater reliability which strengthens findings.
  • Interviewing tends to gather valid data given the depth and deatl, and trained interviewers using semi structed interviews should be able to explore in the necessary depth
6 of 7

Evualtion - Weaknesses

  • Qualitive data was reduced to quantative data to give percentages., which means some of the information could have been lost- such as the role of the husband.
  • This was a study of working class women with one child under 18 at home and in a specific age range, so generalising it to all women might not be apporiate
7 of 7




Results are way to detailed

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »