Development of a short questionnaire for use in epidemiological studies of depression in children and adolescents: factor composition and structure across development


Journal Article

In the present study, the factor composition of a new, brief, easy-to-administer, depression inventory for children and adolescents, the Short Mood and Feelings Questionnaire (SMFQ), was examined. Using longitudinal data from the Pittsburgh Youth Study, confirmatory factor analyses were computed to evaluate the age-invariance of a singlefactor SMFQ structure. Results provided strong support for the unidimensional structure of the SMFQ across grades 1-10 in a large sample of boys. Factor loading correlations across age groups were substantial suggesting developmental continuity in item (symptom) salience for the latent variable of depression. The magnitude of the mean factor loadings increased with age, suggesting that the depression construct was measured with less error as the children matured. In sum, the SMFQ appears to provide a brief and reliable measure of a core depression construct in children and adolescents. © 1995 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Angold, A; Costello, J; Van Kämmen, W; Stouthamer-Loeber, M

Published Date

  • December 1, 1996

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 5 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 251 - 262

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1049-8931

Citation Source

  • Scopus