Detroit Area Study Discrimination Scale

The DAS–DQ is a 28-item measure which reports discrimination based on three distinct categories: (a) frequency of everyday mistreatment, (b) recent episodes of discrimination (within the last 12 months), and (c) reports of lifetime history of discrimination.


Geographies Tested: United States of America

Populations Included: Female, Male

Age Range: Adults


Items Assessing Frequency of Everyday Mistreatment
1. In your day-to-day life how often have any of the following things happened to you?
2. You are treated with less courtesy than other people.
3. You are treated with less respect than other people.
4. You receive poorer service than other people at restaurants or stores.
5. People act as if they think you are not smart.
6. People act as if they are afraid of you.
7. People act as if they think you are dishonest.
8. People act as if they are better than you are.
9. You are called names or insulted.
10. You are threatened or harassed.

Items Assessing History of Discrimination (Lifetime or Past Year)
11. Do you think you have ever been unfairly fired or denied a promotion?
12. For unfair reasons, do you think you have ever not been hired for a job?
13. Have you ever been unfairly stopped, searched, questioned, physically threatened, or abused by the police?
14. Have you ever been unfairly discouraged by a teacher or advisor from continuing your education?
15. Have you ever been unfairly prevented from moving into a neighborhood because the landlord or realtor refused to sell or rent you a house or apartment?
16. Have you ever moved into a neighborhood where neighbors made life difficult for you or your family? Was it so bad that you moved out?

Diary of Behavioral States Items
17. Feel sad?
18. Feel frustratedangry?
19. Feel nervousstressed?
20. Thought upset?
21. Someone treated you badly?
22. Someone interfered with your efforts?
23.Someone in conflict with you?
24. Required working hard?
25. Required working fast?
26. Juggled several tasks at once?
27. Could change activity if you could?
28. Choice in scheduling this activity?

Response Options 6-point Likert Scale

Never- 0 Less than once a year- 1 A few times a year- 2 A few times a month- 3 At least once a week- 4 Almost every day- 5

Scoring Procedures

Greater values corresponded to more frequent experi- ences of mistreatment.

Original Citation

Taylor, T. R., Kamarck, T. W., & Shiffman, S. (2004). Validation of the Detroit Area Study Discrimination Scale in a community sample of older African American adults: The Pittsburgh Health Heart Project. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 11(2), 88-94.

Psychometric Score

Ease of Use Score

Scoring breakdown

Formative Research

Qualitative Research

Existing Literature/Theoretical Framework

Field Expert Input

Cognitive Interviews / Pilot Testing








Criterion (gold-standard)



Ease of Use


Scoring Clarity


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