Two Low-cost Measures of Child and Adolescent Functioning for Services Research

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The Parent and Youth Vanderbilt Functioning Indexes (VFI-P and VFI-Y) are functioning problem indexes for children and adolescents. These are specialized assessment tools distinct from the lengthy procedures used by clinicians to assess functioning. The VFIs low cost permits adequate sample sizes in outcome evaluations of large numbers of children. They collect information on child behavior from two important sources, parents and youths. They are inexpensive to administer, require no clinicians or trained raters and produce predictive validities better than interview-based measures of functioning and popular checklist measures of pathology and competence, especially for measuring serious impairment. Each VFI was developed by; (a) selecting face-valid functioning problems; (b) eliminating all problems not adding significant predictive validity; (c) evaluating the reliability and validity of the index; and (d) comparing the VFIs validity with other popular assessments of child functioning.

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Evaluation and Program Planning, v. 21, issue 3, p. 263-275