Preschool Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PPSC)
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Type of Measure: The Preschool Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PPSC) is an 18-item emotional/behavioral screening instrument that was developed as one component of the Survey of Wellbeing of Young Children (SWYC). The tool was developed to aid pediatricians in the early detection of emotional/behavioral problems for infants and pre-schoolers. Items on the PPSC were developed after an extensive review of relevant measures and literature and consultation with parents of young children and experts in child development.
Target Population: Children 18-60 months
Measurement properties and previous use: The developers of the PPSC (Sheldrick et al., 2012) examined the instrument’s factor structure and conducted tests of construct validity across three separate samples: 292 families from pediatric primary care practice groups; 354 families from referral clinics; and a replication sample consisting of 171 families from a separate set of pediatric primary care practices.
Results from an exploratory factor analysis indicated four interpretable subscales: Externalizing, Internalizing, Attention Problems, and Parenting Challenges. The PPSC total score demonstrated strong internal consistency (Primary Care, alpha = 0.88; Referral Clinic, alpha = 0.92; and Replication alpha = 0.86) and retest reliability (alph = 0.75). The tool identifies children who score in the clinical range of a longer, well-validated parent-report instrument (the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL)), as well as children who are reported to have a range of behavioral diagnoses. Moreover, sensitivity and specificity were comparable (consistently above 0.70) to those of another well-accepted but longer screener, the Ages & Stages Questionnaire: Social/Emotional (ASQ:SE). Finally, results for the PPSC’s total scale remained consistent when replicated in an independent sample.
Languages: English, Spanish, Burmese, Nepali, and Portuguese (see Translations)
Authors and Citation: Sheldrick, R. C., Henson, B. S., Merchant, S., Neger, E. N., Murphy, J. M., & Perrin, E. C. (2012). The Preschool Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PPSC): development and initial validation of a new social/emotional screening instrument. Academic pediatrics, 12(5), 456-467.
Licence: The PPSC is freely available for use, per the Survey of Wellbeing of Children’s FAQ website. It cannot be modified without expressed permission of the authors. If you are interested in translating any component of the SWYC into a new language or administering it in a way for which the downloadable forms are not appropriate, please contact Kate Mattern at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Link to measure: Preschool Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PPSC)
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