Assessment of Anxiety Symptoms in School Children: A Cross-Sex and Ethnic Examination
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We evaluated the cross-sex and -ethnic (Hispanic/Latino, non-Hispanic White) measurement invariance of anxiety symptoms based on the Spence Children’s Anxiety Scale (SCAS) as well as SCAS anxiety symptoms’ correspondence with scores on the 5-item Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders (SCARED) and teacher ratings of child anxiety. Based on data corresponding to 702 children (M age = 9.65, SD = 0.70; 51.9 % girls; 55 % Hispanic/Latino), findings showed some sex and ethnic variations in SCAS measured anxiety at the item and scale levels. Moreover, SCAS correspondence to the 5-item SCARED was found across ethnicity and sex. SCAS correspondence to teacher ratings was found for non-Hispanic White boys and non-Hispanic White girls, marginally in Hispanic/Latino boys, and poorly in Hispanic/Latino girls.
KeywordsHispanic/Latino Child anxiety symptoms Spence children’s anxiety scale Screen for child anxiety related emotional disorders Teacher ratings School assessment
This work was supported in part by grant number K01MH086687 awarded to A. Pina as well as a prevention science fellowship awarded to L. Holly, T32 MH018387 27 from the National Institute of Mental Health. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not represent the official views of the funding agency. We would like to thank the schools that participated in the current research project: Harris Elementary School and Superstition Elementary School (Gilbert School District); Brisas Elementary School and Estrella Elementary School (Kyrene School District); Rose Linda Elementary School and Valley View Elementary School (Roosevelt School District); Pueblo Elementary School, Tonalea Elementary School, and Yavapai Elementary School (Scottsdale Unified School District).
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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