L0026939 Sanskrit manuscript 187

Body Awareness Versus Bodily Dissociation

Price and Thompson, the authors of the 2007 article “Measuring Dimensions of Body Connection: Body Awareness and Bodily Dissociation,” show that the Scale of Body Connection (SBC) is a particularly useful tool to use in measuring body dissociation in people who have experienced trauma.

The SBC is a 20 question assessment of a person’s psychophysical awareness.  The questions were based on common statements made in body therapy.  With a review of the clinical research, statements were assessed as being related either to body awareness or bodily dissociation.  First, 12 Nursing Science doctoral students were asked to evaluate the questionnaire rough draft.  Then, experts in fields associated with body therapy, trauma, and scale development were asked to approve the scale.  The sample size was 291 undergraduate students taking either a history or anthropology class.  The gender breakdown was 55% female, 45% male.  Most of the sample appeared Caucasian with an average age around 20.

The authors used confirmatory factor analysis (CFA), chi square, goodness-of-fit index (GFI), comparative fit index (CFI), normed fit index (NFI),  standardized root mean square residual (SRMS), and the root-mean-squared error of approximation (RMSEA) to measure scale validity.  Scale reliability was measured using Cronbach’s alpha in SPSS.

While the results indicate support for SBC having construct validity and internal consistency reliability, I do not think this new scale would be helpful for my study of culture shock.  How this study defines trauma does not necessarily fit the trauma I associate with culture shock.  In my opinion, even if subjects with culture shock experience body dissociation, the magnitude might be smaller than more concrete traumas and therefore might not be captured by a scale such as this.  I also think that culture shock, while including elements of dissociation both psychologically and biologically might best be measured through the proxy of stress.  This article does, however, have simple and workable definitions of body awareness and bodily dissociation that might be useful.

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