Cross-cultural acceptability and utility of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire: views of families

Journal article


Kersten, P., Dudley, M., Nayar, S., Elder, H., Robertson, H., Tauroa, R. and McPherson, K. M. 2016. Cross-cultural acceptability and utility of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire: views of families. BMC Psychiatry. 16 (347). https://doi.org/doi.org/10.1186/s12888-016-1063-7
AuthorsKersten, P., Dudley, M., Nayar, S., Elder, H., Robertson, H., Tauroa, R. and McPherson, K. M.
Abstract

Background

Screening children for behavioural difficulties requires the use of a tool that is culturally valid. We explored the cross-cultural acceptability and utility of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire for pre-school children (aged 3–5) as perceived by families in New Zealand.

Methods

A qualitative interpretive descriptive study (focus groups and interviews) in which 65 participants from five key ethnic groups (New Zealand European, Māori, Pacific, Asian and other immigrant parents) took part. Thematic analysis using an inductive approach, in which the themes identified are strongly linked to the data, was employed.

Results

Many parents reported they were unclear about the purpose of the tool, affecting its perceived value. Participants reported not understanding the context in which they should consider the questions and had difficulty understanding some questions and response options. Māori parents generally did not support the questionnaire based approach, preferring face to face interaction. Parents from Māori, Pacific Island, Asian, and new immigrant groups reported the tool lacked explicit consideration of children in their cultural context. Parents discussed the importance of timing and multiple perspectives when interpreting scores from the tool.

Conclusions

In summary, this study posed a number of challenges to the use of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire in New Zealand. Further work is required to develop a tool that is culturally appropriate with good content validity.

KeywordsSDQ; Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire; Emotional and behavioural screening; Cross-cultural utility
Year2016
JournalBMC Psychiatry
Journal citation16 (347)
PublisherBMC
ISSN1471-244X
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/doi.org/10.1186/s12888-016-1063-7
Official URLhttps://bmcpsychiatry.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12888-016-1063-7
Publication dates
Online12 Oct 2016
Publication process dates
Accepted04 Oct 2016
Deposited21 Apr 2022
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
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