On the clinical validity of the maslach burnout inventory and the burnout measure

Wilmar B. Schaufeli, Arnold B. Bakker, Kees Hoogduin, Cas Schaap, Atilla Kladler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

526 Citations (Scopus)


Current knowledge about burnout suffers from a healthy worker bias since only working - and thus relatively healthy - employees have been investigated. The main objective of this study is to examine - for the first time among employees who sought psychological treatment - the validity of the two most widely used burnout instruments; the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) and the Burnout Measure (BM). Two groups were distinguished: a "burned out" group (n = 71) that suffers from work-related neurasthenia (according to ICD-10 criteria), and a "non-burned out" group (n = 68). Results show that: (1) the validity of the three-factor structure of the MBI and the BM is confirmed; (2) burnout can partly be differentiated from other mental syndromes (e.g., anxiety and depression); and (3) two MBI-scales (Emotional Exhaustion and Depersonalization) and one BM-scale (Exhaustion) are able to discriminate between burned out and non-burned out employees. The practical implications of these results are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)565-582
Number of pages18
JournalPsychology and Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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