Self-reported competencies and problems among Swedish adolescents: a normative study of the YSR
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The aim of the study was to provide a standardisation of self-reported competencies and emotional/behavioural problems among Swedish adolescents, using the Youth Self-Report (YSR). The YSR was completed by 2522 adolescents aged 13–18 years, recruited from secondary and upper secondary schools in different regions in Sweden. The results showed that effects of gender and age were small but significant with girls scoring higher than boys on most problem scales, and 15- to 16-year-olds scoring higher than younger and older adolescents on the problem scales. Small effects were also found for residence as well as for parental SES. The correlations between internalising and externalising problems were 0.51 for boys and 0.49 for girls, whereas the correlation between competence and problem scores was low. We conclude that the individual variation in YSR-scores is much greater than can be attributed to factors such as gender, age, SES, or residential area. Consequently, the YSR has the potential to serve as an instrument for assessing individual adolescents' self-reported competencies and problems in Sweden. Given the almost orthogonal relation between self-reported competencies and problems, the competence scale is surprisingly little used in psychopathology research.
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