Interpretation of Scores

The scale was developed to assist in clinical assessment, and is not a diagnostic instrument if used on its own. It can provide an indication of whether children are showing elevated levels of anxiety, and should be used in combination with a clinical diagnostic interview if a diagnosis is required. It can also be used to evaluate change over time in response to treatment or prevention programs, and to identify children who are at risk of anxiety problems and who many benefit from early intervention. It is recommended that clinicians read the published paper for further details about the development of the scale and its psychometric properties.

 

Table 1 shows the mean scores and standard deviations for each subscale and the Total Score for ages 3-5 years and for the combined age groups. We found that mothers rated 3 year olds as showing more anxiety symptoms than 4 and 5 year olds. There were no differences in scores for 4 and 5 year olds. Also, girls did not differ from boys in scores on the preschool scale. In interpreting the scale, it is suggested that a score of 1 standard deviation above the mean for a subscale or the total score would warrant further clinical investigation. A score of 0.5 of a standard deviation above the mean on the total score is indicative of an elevated, but not clinical level of anxiety. T scores are available on an adjacent webpage.

Table 1

Age Group and Gender, Based on Mother Report.

 

Age 3

Age 4

Age 5

Total

Subscale

N=170

N=170

N=170

N=510

 

Mean

(SD)

Mean

(SD)

Mean

(SD)

Mean

(SD)

Generalised Anxiety

2.94

(2.95)

1.46

(1.94)

2.04

(2.51)

2.15      

(2.57)

 

Social Anxiety

5.27

(3.65)

4.42

(3.47)

4.29

(4.02)

4.66      

(3.74)

 

Obsessive Compulsive

2.03

(2.74)

0.58

(1.15)

1.09

(1.75)

1.23      

(2.08)

 

Physical Injury Fears

8.06

(4.26)

5.54

(3.81)

5.92

(4.60)

6.51      

(4.37)

 

Separation Anxiety

3.77

(3.17)

2.12

(2.48)

2.29

(2.58)

2.73     

 (2.85)

 

Total Score

 

22.07

(12.87)

14.12

(8.79)

15.65

(11.94)

17.28     

(11.83)