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Child Psychiatry Hum Dev. 2004 Spring;34(3):167-201.

Ethnic differences using behavior rating scales to assess the mental health of children: a conceptual and psychometric critique.

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School of Social Work, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306-2570, USA.


This article reviews the literature on using behavior-rating scales to assess the mental health of children from different ethnic groups in the United States. Particular emphasis is placed on children referred to child welfare and juvenile justice systems. Differences between categorical and dimensional classification, as well as broadband versus narrowband classification approaches are discussed. Sources of potential bias and the best available methods used to assess ethnic group differences in ratings scales are presented. Finally, the extent to which behavior rating scales have been examined for measurement equivalence is critiqued and directions for future research are forward.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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