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Keywords:

  • ADHD;
  • Conners' 10-item scale;
  • Emotional lability;
  • Gender;
  • Restless/impulsive behaviour

Abstract

Aim: To present normative data for the Swedish version of the Conners' 10-item scale, to validate the scale by comparing children with and without attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), to explore the factor structure of this scale and to investigate behavioural characteristics and gender differences among 10- to 11-year-old children, as rated by parents and teachers respectively.

Methods: Parents and teachers rated 509 10- to 11-year-old children (261 boys and 248 girls) from a population-based cohort in a Swedish municipality.

Results: The Conners' 10-item scale discriminated very well between children with and without ADHD. Confirmatory factor analyses confirmed a two-dimensional structure of the scale with items measuring restless/impulsive behaviour in one factor and items measuring emotional lability in another. An ANOVA revealed that parents and teachers reported different behavioural characteristics in boys as compared to girls.

Conclusion: The Conners' 10-item scale is a valid screening instrument for identification of ADHD. The two subscales can be used separately, in addition to the total score, to get a more detailed picture of the child's behaviour. Parents and teachers pay attention to different aspects of problem behaviour in boys and girls. The less disruptive behaviour of girls needs to be highlighted.