Competencies and problems of Irish children and adolescents
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This study set out to investigate the behavioural and emotional problems and competencies of Irish children and adolescents using Achenbach's Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL) and Youth Self Report (YSR). The Child Behaviour Checklist was completed by parents of 481 Irish school children aged 7–9 years and 13–15 years, and the Youth Self Report was completed by 240 adolescents. The schools were selected to represent a wide social and cultural spread. Irish young people of all ages scored significantly lower than their American counterparts on measures of competence, whether rated by themselves or their parents. The parents of the 7–9 year olds rated their children as having significantly lower total problem scores than their American counterparts, but for 13–15 year olds there were no differences in total problem scores between the Irish and American samples, whether rated by parents or the adolescents themselves. Total problem scores and externalizing scores increased with age on the CBCL and the YSR, a pattern in which Irish young people differed from those in most other cultures. Despite differences in sampling and methodology, the Irish results are similar in many respects to those seen in a number of other European studies.
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