The Experience Sampling Method: A New Way of Assessing Variability of the Emotional Dimensions of Religiosity and Spirituality in a Dutch Psychiatric Population

Bart van den Brink, Matthias Jongkind, Willemijn Wijzenbroek, Mira Duif, Arjan W. Braam, Philippe Delespaul, Hanneke Schaap-Jonker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Religiosity and spirituality (R/S) are often regarded as being relatively stable over time. The present exploratory experience sampling method (ESM) study aims to assess the variability of three R/S parameters concerning affective representations of God and spiritual experiences in a psychiatric population. Depressed in- and outpatients self-identifying as being spiritual or religious participated, from two Dutch mental health care institutions. The twenty-eight participants rated momentary affective R/S-variables up to 10 times per day over a 6-day period when prompted by a mobile application. All three examined R/S parameters varied significantly within the day. ESM examination of R/S showed good compliance and little reactivity. This indicates that ESM offers a feasible, usable, and valid way to explore R/S in a psychiatric population.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3687-3701
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Religion and Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


  • Depression
  • Experience sampling method
  • God representation
  • Religiosity
  • Spirituality

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