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Keywords:

  • translation;
  • cross-cultural comparison;
  • infant temperament;
  • Early Infant Temperament Questionnaire;
  • Danish translation

Aims of the study.  To test the psychometric properties of a Danish translation of the Early Infant Temperament Questionnaire (EITQ) and to establish standards for scoring the questionnaire.

Rationale.  The general aim was to create a translation that remained close to the original version, was meaningful for the Danish participants, and had acceptable psychometric properties.

Background.  Patterns of temperament can be discerned early in life and tend to persist over time and across situations. For the past 50 years, temperament has been studied by theorists, clinicians and nurse clinicians to predict behaviour, discover interventions that prevent serious behaviour disturbances, and help parents understand the implications of their child's temperament. Thomas and Chess's conceptualization of temperament in nine categories was the framework for the development of the English-language EITQ.

Research methods.  The translation followed a stepwise process of translation, back translation and consensus. A convenience sample of 204 Danish mothers with 1–4-month old infants completed the translated questionnaire and a demographic questionnaire in 1999.

Results.  Alpha coefficients for the nine subscales ranged from 0·59 to 0·82. All alpha coefficients were comparable to or higher than those reported on the original United States standardization study. There were statistically significant differences between reported United States mean scores and those in the Danish sample.

Discussion.  The psychometric properties of the Danish translation are equal to or better than those reported for the United States study. Differences in mean scores or most subscales point to the need to create Danish profiles for scoring.

Conclusions.  The Danish version of the EITQ has acceptable reliability and is ready for use in Denmark.