Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ)

CPP Cohort 4

The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ)* is a brief screening questionnaire used to assess caregiver perceptions of positive and negative psychological attributes of children.  Two versions were used: SDQ: 2-4 years and SDQ: 4-10 years; cutoff scores vary by version.  Domains assessed include emotional problems, conduct, hyperactivity, peer problems, overall difficulties, impact of problems, and prosocial skills.

Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ): 2-4 years

Descriptive Statistics: Pre- and post- assessment measure means, standard deviations, and standard errors for each subscale of the SDQ: 2-4 years are listed in the table below, as well as the range of possible scores and clinically significant range for each subscale.

SDQ 2-4 Years: Descriptive Statistics

Repeated Measures Analyses: Paired samples t-tests were conducted to examine pre-post group mean differences on SDQ: 2-4 years subscales and total difficulties scores.  Analyses showed statistically significant change in the impact scale, but did not show statistically significant change in any of the remaining positive and negative psychological attributes assessed by the SDQ, including emotional symptoms, conduct problems, hyperactivity symptoms, peer problems, total difficulties, and prosocial.

SDQ 2-4: Paired Sample T-Test

SDQ 2-4 Subscales: Pre-Post Mean Scores

SDQ 2-4 Total: Pre-Post Mean Scores

Individual Clinically Significant Change: At pre-treatment, 4 clients had SDQ: 2-4 years Total Difficulties scores at or above the clinical cutoff score of 16.  Of note, none of these clients were missing post-treatment data for the Total Difficulties scale.  Analysis of the clients with post-treatment data showed that SDQ: 2-4 years Total Difficulties scores for 1 of these 4 clients (25%) decreased to non-clinically significant scores at post-treatment.

For SDQ: 2-4 years problem subscales, there were 4, 1, 2, 1, and 3 clients, respectively with pre-treatment SDQ: 2-4 years Emotional Symptoms, Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, Peer Problems, and Impact scores at or above the clinical cutoff score (see descriptive table above for each subscale cutoff score).  Of note, none of these clients were missing post-treatment data on the Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, and Peer Problems subscales; however, data was missing for 1 of these clients on the Emotional Symptoms and Impact subscales.  Analyses of the post-treatment data indicated that there were 3 of 3 clients (100%), 1of 1 client (100%), 2 of 2 clients (100%), 1 of 1 client (100%), and 2 of 2 clients (100%), respectively, with SDQ: 2-4 years Emotional Symptoms, Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, Peer Problems, and Impact scores that decreased to non-clinically significant levels at post-treatment.  For the SDQ: 2-4 years Prosocial subscale, there was 1 client with pre-treatment scores at or below the clinical cutoff score of 5.  This client was not missing post-treatment data for the Prosocial subscale.  Analyses of the post-treatment data indicated that there was 0 of 1 client (0%) with a SDQ: 2-4 years Prosocial score that increased to the non-clinically significant range at post-treatment.

Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ): 4-10 years

Descriptive Statistics: Pre-and post-treatment assessment measure means, standard deviations, and standard errors for each subscale of the SDQ: 4-10 years are listed in the table below, as well as the range of possible scores and clinically significant range for each subscale.

SDQ 4-10: Descriptive Statistics

Repeated Measures Analyses: Paired samples t-tests were conducted to examine pre-post group mean differences on the SDQ: 4-10 years subscales and total difficulties scores.  Analyses showed statistically significant improvement in the Prosocial subscale, but there was not statistically significant change in the Emotional Symptoms, Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, Peer Problems, and Impact subscales, as well as the total difficulties scale, assessed by the SDQ: 4-10 years.  Please see the table and graphs below for more information on these analyses.

SDQ 4-10: Paired Sample T-Test

SDQ 4-10 Subscales: Pre-Post Mean Scores

SDQ 4-10 Total: Pre-Post Mean Scores

Individual Clinically Significant Change: At pre-treatment, 3 clients had SDQ: 4-10 years Total Difficulties scores at or above the clinical cutoff score of 17.  Of note, none of these clients were missing post-treatment data for the Total Difficulties scale.  Analysis of the clients with post-treatment data showed that SDQ: 4-10 years Total Difficulties scores for 2 of these 3 clients (67%) decreased to non-clinically significant scores at post-treatment.

For SDQ: 4-10 years problem subscales, there were 3, 1, 3, 2, and 3 clients, respectively with pre-treatment SDQ: 4-10 years Emotional Symptoms, Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, Peer Problems, and Impact scores at or above the clinical cutoff score (see descriptive table above for each subscale cutoff score).  Of note, none of these clients were missing post-treatment data on each of these subscales.  Analyses of the post-treatment data indicated that there were 1 of 3 clients (33%), 0 of 1 client (0%), 1 of 3 clients (33%), 2 of 2 clients (100%), and 2 of 3 clients (67%), respectively, with SDQ: 4-10 years Emotional Symptoms, Conduct Problems, Hyperactivity Symptoms, Peer Problems, and Impact scores that decreased to non-clinically significant levels at post-treatment.  For the SDQ: 4-10 years Prosocial subscale, there were 2 clients with pre-treatment scores at or below the clinical cutoff score of 6.  None of these clients were missing post-treatment data for the Prosocial subscale.  Analyses of the post-treatment data indicated that there was 2 of 2 clients (100%) with a SDQ: 4-10 years Prosocial score that increased to the non-clinically significant range at post-treatment.

 

*Goodman, R. (1997). The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire: A research note. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 38, 581 -586

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