Assessing the strengths of young children at risk: Examining use of the preschool behavioral and emotional rating scale with a head start population

Annette K. Griffith, Kristin Duppong Hurley, Alexandra L. Trout, Lori Synhorst, Michael H. Epstein, Elizabeth Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Over the past decade, there has been an increased need for the development and use of psychometrically acceptable measures to assess the behavioral and emotional strengths of young children served in statewide preschool and Head Start programs. One measure developed to address this need is the Preschool Behavioral and Emotional Rating Scale (PreBERS), which is a strength-based instrument designed to evaluate the behavioral and emotional strengths of preschool children aged 3 to 5 years old. In a previous study with a nationally representative sample, researchers found that (a) the items of the PreBERS can best be described by a four-factor structure model (Emotional Regulation, School Readiness, Social Confidence, and Family Involvement), (b) the subscales and total measure have highly acceptable levels of internal consistency, and (c) differences were obtained for levels of strength for preschool children with and without disabilities. The findings of this investigation replicate these previous results with a national sample of children (N = 962) enrolled in Head Start programs. Confirmatory factor analysis and analyses of internal consistency and criterion validity provide support for the use of the PreBERS with children served in Head Start programs. Study limitations and implications are addressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-285
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Early Intervention
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 7 2010



  • Head Start
  • preschool children
  • strength-based assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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