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Development and validation of the user version of the Mobile Application Rating Scale (uMARS)

  • Stoyanov, Stoyan
  • Hides, Leanne
  • Kavanagh, David
  • Wilson, Hollie
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2016
Queensland University of Technology ePrints Archive


Background - The Mobile Application Rating Scale (MARS) provides a reliable method to assess the quality of mobile health (mHealth) apps. However, training and expertise in mHealth and the relevant health field is required to administer it. Objective - This study describes the development and reliability testing of an end-user version of the MARS (uMARS). Methods - The MARS was simplified and piloted with 13 young people to create the uMARS. The internal consistency and test-retest reliability of the uMARS was then examined in a second sample of 164 young people participating in a randomized controlled trial of a mHealth app. App ratings were collected using the uMARS at 1-, 3,- and 6-month follow up. Results - The uMARS had excellent internal consistency (alpha = .90), with high individual alphas for all subscales. The total score and subscales had good test-retest reliability over both 1-2 months and 3 months. Conclusions - The uMARS is a simple tool that can be reliably used by end-users to assess the quality of mHealth apps.

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