Journal List > J Korean Neuropsychiatr Assoc > v.51(4) > 1017574

Yang, Bae, and Lee: Stability of Early Maladaptive Schemas and Their Relationships with Depressive Symptoms : A 2-Year Follow-Up Study



Early maladaptive schemas (EMS) are assumed to be stable emotional and cognitive patterns that begin early in our development and are repeated throughout life. The primary aim of this study was to examine the two-year stability of EMS using the Young Schema Questionnaire (YSQ). In addition, we investigated the relationship between EMS and depressive symptoms over time.


Seventy-nine medical students completed the YSQ-short form 3, the Beck Depression Inventory, and the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised during their first and third years of medical school.


After controlling for depression severity, YSQ subscales showed significant test-retest correlations for all of the subscales (r between 0.49 and 0.77, ps<0.001). Mean scores for all of the subscales did not differ significantly at retest, with the exception of a significant reduction of vulnerability to harm/illness (t=3.71, p<0.001). Concerning the relationship with depression, some YSQ subscales showed association with the severity of depressive symptoms at each time point, as well as changes between two time points. In particular, the schemas of Defectiveness/Shame and Dependence/Incompetence showed a strong association with changes of depressive symptoms.


These findings demonstrated that EMS measured using the YSQ may show con-siderable temporal stability over time, but, in part, may be affected by an individual's state, such as depression.

Figures and Tables

Table 1
Zero-order and partial correlation between the test and re-test for the domains and subscales of YSQ-SF3

All correlations were significant at the p<0.001 level. YSQ-SF3 : Young Schema Questionnaire-Short Form 3, BDI : Beck Depression Inventory

Table 2
Comparison between the test and re-test for the domains and subscales of YSQ-SF3

YSQ-SF3 : Young Schema Questionnaire-Short Form 3, SD : Standard deviation, df : Degrees of freedom

Table 3
Relation between the early maladaptive schemas and depressive symptom at each time point

* : p<0.002. YSQ-SF3 : Young Schema Questionnaire-Short Form 3, SCL-90-R : Symptoms Checklist-90-Revised, DEP : Depression subscale, BDI : Beck Depression Inventory

Table 4
Relation between the changes of early maladaptive schemas and those of depressive symptom for two years

YSQ-SF3 : Young Schema Questionnaire-Short Form 3, SCL-90-R : Symptoms Checklist-90-Revised, BDI : Beck Depression Inventory


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