Convergent and discriminant validity of psychiatric symptoms reported in The Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study at age 3 years with independent clinical assessment in the Longitudinal ADHD Cohort Study
AbstractEpidemiological studies often use parent questionnaires to assess children's development and mental health. To date, few studies have investigated the validity of parent questionnaires with standardized clinical assessments as criterion. The current study examines discriminant and convergent validity of parent questionnaires for symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD), and Conduct Disorder (CD) as well as symptoms of Separation Anxiety employed in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study by using structured clinical interviews performed 5 months later in the Longitudinal ADHD Cohort Study as a criterion. The comparison of confirmatory factor analysis models and examination of factor correlations indicate convergent and discriminant validity of MoBa parent questionnaires for preschool children, especially for the assessment of ADHD and ODD/CD. Future research should attempt to further improve parent questionnaires, examine their validity in representative samples, and explicitly test their utility for screening.
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