Date: 19 Feb 2009

Validity of the Self-Harm Behavior Questionnaire with Diverse Adolescents

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Abstract

Suicide and non-suicidal self-injurious behavior (NSSI) continue to be significant health problems for adolescents. Although there are many instruments available to assess self-harm behaviors, few have been validated for use with adolescents, and even fewer have been validated for use with different racial/ethnic groups. The Self-Harm Behavior Questionnaire (SHBQ) assesses NSSI, suicidal ideation, suicide threats, and past suicide attempts. Data from 1,386 racially/ethnically diverse adolescents (57.5% minority) were collected to examine the validity of the SHBQ in this age group. Analyses supported the four-factor structure, revealed the SHBQ is internally consistent, and provided evidence for convergent validity within Caucasian, African American, and Hispanic adolescents. However, slight differences were noted. Overall, the findings suggest the SHBQ is a useful assessment tool appropriate for use with Caucasian, African American, and Hispanic adolescents.