Screen for Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED) – Child Report

The Screen for Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED)-Child Report instrument consists of 41 items asking the parent (or caregiver) to indicate how often a descriptive phrase regarding how their child may have felt over the course of the previous three months is true. Respondents may select from the options of “Not True or Hardly Ever True”, “Somewhat True or Sometimes True”, and “Very True or Often True.” The SCARED-Child Report is intended for use by trained clinicians only and designed to be used with children ages eight to 18.  Clinicians and psychiatrists should allow ten minutes for a child or adolescent to complete this handwritten measure.  In addition to English, this measure is available in Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, and Portuguese.

The items included on the questionnaire are reflective of the DSM-IV criteria for anxiety disorders in childhood such as panic disorder, separation anxiety disorder, social phobia, general anxiety disorder, and symptoms related to school phobias.  However, scores on this measure should be interpreted with caution.  A particular score on this measure should not be taken to mean that the respondent has a particular disorder, as this measure is only one component of a diagnostic evaluation. Similarly, this measure does not yield a definitive diagnosis, but rather suggests types of mental health disorders that may be the cause of the respondent’s emotional or behavioral difficulties.  A diagnosis can only be reached after a thorough evaluation by a trained clinician.

This instrument has a companion parent-report version, which assesses the same symptoms.

Tool

Administration Method
Number of Questions
41
Creator(s) of Tool
Developers of the tool:
Boris Birmaher, M.D., Suneeta Khetarpal, M.D., Marlane Cully, M.Ed., David Brent, M.D., and Sandra McKenzie, Ph.D.,
Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh (October, 1995).

Citation for the tool:
Birmaher, B., Brent, D. A., Chiappetta, L., Bridge, J., Monga, S., & Baugher, M. (1999). Psychometric properties of the Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED): A replication study. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 38, 1230-1236.

http://www.psychiatry.pitt.edu/sites/default/files/Documents/assessments/SCARED%20Child.pdf
Scoring / Benchmarking
Information regarding how to score the instrument is provided on the instrument itself. Scores are tallied at the end of the questionnaire by assigning a point value of 0 to responses indicated for “Not True or Hardly Ever True”, a point value of 1 to responses indicated for “Somewhat True or Sometimes True”, and a point value of 2 to responses indicated for “Very True or Often True”. The questionnaire includes a scoring matrix to indicate the potential presence of general anxiety and other more specific anxiety disorders.
Background / Quality
In a study in which the SCARED-Child Report was administered to 166 of the parents of 190 mental health outpatient children, this measure was found to have good internal consistency (coefficient value of approximately .90) (Birmaher, et al., 1999). Five factors, 1) panic/somatic; (2) generalized anxiety; (3) separation anxiety; (4) social phobia; and (5) school phobia, emerged from factor analysis (coefficient values ranging from .78-.87). For the total anxiety score, the correlation between parent and child reports was p = 0.32 (p = .0001), while correlations for individual factors ranged from 0.22 for general anxiety to 0.39 for separation anxiety (p< .005). In general, correlations were higher between parents and children over the age of twelve. Additionally, the SCARED-Child Report demonstrated discriminant validity in terms of differentiating anxiety disorders from non-anxiety disorders and anxiety from depression for all factors, anxiety from disruptive disorders for most factors, and panic/somatic disorders, GAD, and social phobia from other anxiety disorders.


Key Reference:
Birmaher, B., Brent, D. A., Chiappetta, L., Bridge, J., Monga, S., & Baugher, M. (1999). Psychometric properties of the Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED): A replication study. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 38, 1230-1236.
Is there a cost associated with this tool?
No
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