Get access

Mothers' questionnaire of preschoolers' language and motor skills: a validation study


Einar Gudmundsson, fil.dr. or Sigurdur J. Gretarsson, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Iceland, IS-101 Reykjavík, Iceland. E-mail:;


Objective  Parent questionnaires of child motor and language skills are useful in many contexts. This study validates one such measure, the Preschool Child Development Inventory (PCDI), a mother-answered standardized measure of motor (fine and gross) and language (expression and comprehension) skills of 3–6-year-old children.

Methods  Eighty-one mothers answered the inventory and their children were concurrently tested on six verbal subtests of WPPSI-RIS.

Results  The six language and motor subtests of the PCDI revealed the predicted convergent and divergent correlations with the verbal subtests of the WPPSI-RIS. As predicted, the motor subtests diverged and the language subtests converged with the expected WPPSI-RIS subtests. Principal components analysis of all the measures (the PCDI and the WPPSI-RIS subtests) revealed two components, verbal and motor in content.

Conclusions  The findings support the validity of a mother-answered inventory to assess language and motor development. It is pointed out that such inventories are a viable brief and cost effective alternative to individual testing, both to supplement such measures in clinical practice and as main information in research, for example on determinants of development. Some suggestions are made for future research and applications.